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Dual role of chemically functionalized activated carbon fibres: investigation of parameters influencing the degradation of organophosphorus compounds and antibacterial behaviour

Gopinath, Ashitha, Krishna, Kadirvelu
Journal of chemical technology and biotechnology 2019 v.94 no.2 pp. 611-617
Klebsiella pneumoniae, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, activated carbon, antibacterial properties, bicarbonates, carbon fibers, catalysts, decontamination, free radical scavengers, free radicals, hot water treatment, hydroxyl radicals, inorganic ions, malathion, models, nanorods, nitrates, phosphates, photocatalysis, photoluminescence, pollutants, sulfates, trapping, water pollution, water resources, water treatment, zinc oxide
BACKGROUND: An efficient material possessing both photocatalytic and antimicrobial properties is necessary to remediate contaminated water resources. In the present study, zinc oxide nanorods (ZnO) have been impregnated on activated carbon fibres (ACF) to develop a heterogeneous photocatalytic system for the degradation of an organophosphorus compound, taking Malathion as a model pollutant, and to investigate the antibacterial efficiency of the former. RESULTS: The efficiency of Malathion removal varies with catalyst dosage, initial concentration of Malathion, and also depends on the interference from inorganic ions such as chloride, nitrate, sulfate, phosphate and bicarbonate in the contaminated solution. The role played by the highly active radicals in the degradation process is inevitable, confirmed by the addition of radical scavengers during the reaction. Hydroxyl radicals were found to be the most active species accountable for the degradation of Malathion. Moreover, OH trapping experiments conducted by measuring photoluminescence (PL) intensity concluded that greater amounts of OH radicals are generated with increase in time. Reusability and long‐term stability of the composite was validated for up to five degradation cycles. The developed composite also possesses microbial decontamination capabilities, verified by studying antibacterial assay against Gram positive Staphylococcus aureus and Gram negative strains of Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Klebsiella Pneumoniae. CONCLUSION: Dual functional and reusable ZnO rods/ACF composites were developed using a simple, low cost hydrothermal method, and could be used as a potential candidate for water treatment applications. © 2018 Society of Chemical Industry