Sulfate radical-based ferrous–peroxymonosulfate oxidative system for PCBs degradation in aqueous and sediment systems
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the environment pose long-term risk to public health because of their persistent and toxic nature. This study investigates the degradation of PCBs using sulfate radical-based advanced oxidation processes (SR-AOPs). These processes are based on the generation of sulfate radicals through iron (Fe(II), Fe(III)) mediated activation of peroxymonosulfate (KHSO5, PMS) or persulfate (Na2S2O8, PS). This study is the first instance for coupling of Fe(II)/Fe(III) with PMS for PCB degradation in aqueous and sediment systems. The high oxidation efficiencies of the free radicals (SO4−), in combination with the slow rate of consumption of the oxidants, make these processes very effective for the degradation of recalcitrant organic compounds. The effectiveness of the process was evaluated based on the degradation of a model polychlorinated biphenyl, 2-chlorobiphenyl and total organic carbon (TOC) removal. The kinetics of 2-chlorobiphenyl degradation along with the effect of oxidant and catalyst concentrations on the degradation efficiency was studied. Near complete removal of 2-chlorobiphenyl was observed when Fe(II) was used with PMS or PS. Fe(II) acts as a sulfate radical scavenger at higher concentrations indicating that there is an optimum concentration of Fe(II) that leads to most effective degradation of the target contaminant. A chelating agent, sodium citrate, was used to control the quantity of iron in the solution for activation of the oxidant. For the first time, we studied the feasibility of the activation of PMS using iron citrate complexes for PCB degradation. In the presence of sodium citrate, increase in degradation efficiency was observed up to a metal:ligand ratio of 1:2, after which the increase in citrate concentration led to a decrease in removal efficiency. Fe(II)/PMS systems were found to be very effective in degrading PCB in a sediment-slurry system with more than 90% PCB removal being observed within 24 h.
Journal: Applied Catalysis B: Environmental - Volume 85, Issues 3–4, 12 January 2009, Pages 171–179