Taste and Odor

glass-filled-from-faucetSome forms of cyanobacteria release chemicals that produce unwanted tastes and odors in the water.  Geosmin and 2-methylisoborneol (MIB) are chemicals produced by cyanobacteria that are commonly cited for creating earthy and musty sensations in our drinking water supplies. Treating these taste and odor problems can be both difficult and costly.

These unwanted tastes and odors are often cause for drinking water utilities consumer complaints, when the human detection levels are reached.  These levels are very minute, quantified in parts per trillion (ppt).  The earthy odor of Geosmin can be detected at ~5ppt and the limit for taste is ~16ppt.  The musty odor of MIB can be detected at ~15ppt and taste at ~18ppt.

Geosmin and MIB may be, but are not always produced during the life cycle of several genera of cyanobacteria.  As the cells die, the chemicals are released.  Some of the more common types of cyanobacteria and the taste and odor chemicals they are capable of producing are:

Anabaena- Geosmin
Lyngbya- MIB
Microcystis-Geosmin & MIB
Oscillatoria- Geosmin & MIB
Phormidium- Geosmin & MIB
Planktothrix- MIB
Pseudanabaena- MIB
Synechococcus- MIB

The oxidative chemistry of PAK®27 does an exceptional job of neutralizing these compounds and thus reducing and eliminating customer complaints.

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