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Terms & Synonyms

Official WHO Definition

The clumping together of particles to increase the rate at which sedimentation occurs. Usually triggered by the addition of certain chemicals (e.g. lime, aluminium sulfate, ferric chloride) (WHO 2006).The process of destabilizing charges on particles in water by adding chemicals (coagulants) (Symons et al. 2000).

Other Definitions


Interpretations and Explanations

Natural particles in water have negative charges that repel other material and thereby keep it in suspension. In coagulation, positively charged chemicals are added to neutralize or destalize these charges and allow the particles to accumulate and be removed by physical processes such as sedimentation or filtration (Symons et al. 2000).


WHO (2006) Guidelines for the safe use of wastewater, excreta and greywaterSymons JM, Bradley LC Jr and Cleveland TC (2000) The Drinking Water Dictionary. American Water Works Association

WHO Lexicon page (translations and examples)

See also

External Resources


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