Excessive fluoride (F) in drinking water should be removed, but simple, inexpensive methods of fluoride removal are not readily available. This study examines the F(-)-binding capacity of clay and clayware, especially the effect of the firing temperature on the F(-)-binding process. A series of pots were made from ordinary potter’s clay and fired at 500-1000 degrees C. Likewise, small clay bricks were fired and then crushed and sieved. NaF solutions containing 10 mg/l F- (10 ppm F-) were prepared. Suitable aliquots of the solutions were poured into clay pots or exposed to powdered clayware. Samples were taken at storage periods of 30 min to 20 days and analyzed for F- by ion-selective electrodes. The rate and capacity of F(-)-binding in the clayware varied with the firing temperature. Clay fired at approximately 600 degrees C was most effective. Temperatures over 700 degrees C caused a decline in F(-)-binding, and pottery fired at 900 degrees C and above seemed unable to remove F- from water. Pots fired at 500 degrees C or less cracked in water. The findings indicate that clayware, fired at an optimal temperature, may be of practical value for partial defluoridation of drinking water.
*Original abstract online at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7871355