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Carbon felt cathodes for electro-Fenton process to remove tetracycline via synergistic adsorption and degradation

Chen, Song, Tang, Lin, Feng, Haopeng, Zhou, Yaoyu, Zeng, Guangming, Lu, Yue, Yu, Jiangfang, Ren, Xiaoya, Peng, Bo, Liu, Xiaocheng
The Science of the total environment 2019 v.670 pp. 921-931
Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, adsorption, carbon, cathodes, high performance liquid chromatography, mass spectrometry, mineralization, moieties, nitrogen, pollutants, potassium hydroxide, solid phase extraction, surface area, synergism, temperature, tetracycline
The adsorbability on the carbonaceous cathode plays an important role in electro-Fenton systems but does not obtain enough attention. In this work, various carbon felts were obtained with different adsorption property by using the method of KOH activation at different temperatures to explore the influence of adsorption on the degradation efficiency of tetracycline (TC). The results of morphology characterization, nitrogen adsorption-desorption tests, XPS and FTIR analysis revealed that the surface area of carbon felt was improved, and the oxygen-containing functional groups on the surface were increased via KOH method with significantly enhanced adsorption capacity. In the batch experiment of TC electro-Fenton degradation, the carbon felt with better adsorption capacity tended to get higher degradation and mineralization efficiency. With the KOH activation process, CF-900 (carbon felt at 900 °C for 1 h) exhibited the best TC adsorption property for the removal of TC within 30 min (initial concentration: 80 mg/L). Meanwhile, the constant of reaction rate for TC degradation at the CF-900 is 0.0648 min−1. It is higher than that (0.012 min−1) obtained at the raw carbon felt (∼5 times of enhancement). There are also synergistic effects between adsorption and degradation performance on some other organic pollutants. In addition, the degradation pathway was also studied by the methods of solid-phase extraction and high performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (HPLC). From the obtained results, it is shown that good adsorbability is favorable for degradation in the homogeneous electro-Fenton system.