Comparison of the efficacy of free residual chlorine and monochloramine against biofilms in model and full scale cooling towers

Turetgen I.

BIOFOULING, vol.20, no.2, pp.81-85, 2004 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 20 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2004
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/08927010410001710027
  • Journal Name: BIOFOULING
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.81-85
  • Keywords: monochloramine, free chlorine, cooling tower, biofilm, biofouling, disinfection, DRINKING-WATER, BACTERIAL BIOFILMS, SYSTEM, LEGIONELLA, DISINFECTION, BIOCIDE
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


The presence of microbial cells on surfaces results in the formation of biofilms, which may also give rise to microbiologically influenced corrosion. Biofilms accumulate on all submerged industrial and environmental surfaces. The efficacy of disinfectants is usually evaluated using planktonic cultures, which often leads to an underestimate of the concentration required to control a biofilm. The aim of this study was to investigate the efficacy of monochloramine on biofilms developed in a cooling tower. The disinfectants selected for the study were commercial formulations recommended for controlling microbial growth in cooling towers. A cooling tower and a laboratory model recirculating water system were used as biofilm reactors. Although previous studies have evaluated the efficacy of free chlorine and monochloramine for controlling biofilm growth, there is a lack of published data concerning the use monochloramine in cooling towers. Stainless steel coupons were inserted in each tower basin for a period of 30 d before removal. Monochloramine and free chlorine were tested under identical conditions on mixed biofilms which had been allowed to grow on coupons. Monochloramine was found to be significantly more effective than free chlorine against cooling tower biofilms.