Hydrodynamic cavitation using vortex diode: An efficient approach for elimination of pathogenic bacteria from water

Pooja Jain, Vinay M. Bhandari*, Kshama Balapure, Jyotsnarani Jena, Vivek V. Ranade, Deepak J. Killedar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)
266 Downloads (Pure)


The present study successfully demonstrates greener methodology of hydrodynamic cavitation using rotational flows for disinfection of water. Disinfection of two model microbial strains-gram- negative (Escherichia coli)and gram-positive (Staphylococcus aureus)using vortex diode was evaluated. The removal efficacy was quantified for two different cavitation reactors. Practically complete elimination of E. coli was achieved (99%)after 1 h of cavitation at a pressure drop of only 0.5 bar. However, elimination of S. aureus using vortex diode was observed to be lower in comparison to the removal of E. coli and only 60% disinfection could be achieved under similar conditions, which can be subsequently enhanced up to 98% by increasing pressure drop. The results were compared with another cavitating device that employs linear flow for cavitation, orifice. The reactor geometry has significant impact on the disinfection process and orifice was found to require significantly higher pressure drop (10 bar)conditions for disinfection and for eliminating gram-positive bacteria with high efficiency. A plausible mechanism for disinfection was proposed to elucidate the role of cavitation in cell destruction leading to death of cells through the rupture of cell wall, oxidative damage and possible DNA denaturation. Also, a cavitation model using per pass disinfection was developed that can provide meaningful physical description of the disinfection process as against the conventional first order reaction rate model. This study would provide meaningful insight into cavitation process based on hydrodynamic cavitation for the destruction of both gram-negative and gram-positive bacteria from various water sources, including industrial wastewaters.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)210-219
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Early online date03 May 2019
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2019


  • Cavitation
  • Disinfection
  • Kinetics
  • Pollution
  • Wastewater treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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