Disinfection, Adsorption and Natural Processes for Water Treatment

The aim of this course is to present and exchange state-of-the-art knowledge and experience on the technologies and design practices of conventional water treatment systems. This course was previously known as "Surface Water Treatment II". 

For whom?

Professionals dealing with engineering, management and education in the fields of water supply and wastewater and urban infrastructure will benefit greatly from this short course. It is also helpful for post graduate students in environmental engineering. Participants from government organisations (such as local administrations and national agencies), non-governmental organisations and the private sector are encouraged to join. This course is ideal for practicing engineers who are working in the water supply and sewerage systems.


Participants should meet the general IHE Delft admission criteria, and possess a BSc degree in chemical, environmental, or civil engineering.

Learning objectives

Upon completion, the participant should be able to:
  1. Explain the principles of disinfection, drinking water quality, natural treatment systems, adsorption and activated carbon filtration processes
  2. Integrate theoretical principles of disinfection with practical aspects of evaluation of disinfection systems
  3. Prepare conceptual design of appropriate processes following the evaluation of water quality characteristics and the intended use of the treated water

Course content

The course covers some of the unit processes of conventional surface water treatment. The following unit process will be explored in detail through lectures, laboratory sessions and workshops:


  • Disinfection: Basic principles of disinfection; chemical disinfection; disinfection by products; ozone disinfection; UV disinfection.
  • Adsorption: Theoretical background of adsorptive processes.
  • Activated carbon: Granular and powdered activated carbon, modelling and design.
  • Chemical softening: Principles of chemical softening and sludge blanket softening; design and operation of pellet-softening and membrane softening plants.
  • Ion exchange: Ion exchange resins (selectivity, column operation, regeneration of resins and applications).


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