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Catalytic oxidation of organic pollutants in wastewater via a Fenton-like process under the catalysis of HNO₃-modified coal fly ash

Wang, Nannan, Zhao, Qiang, Zhang, Aili
RSC advances 2017 v.7 no.44 pp. 27619-27628
adsorption, catalysts, catalytic activity, coal fly ash, hydrochloric acid, mixing, oxidation, p-nitrophenol, pH, phosphoric acid, pollutants, sulfuric acid, temperature, wastewater, wastewater treatment
The performance of acid-modified coal fly ash (CFA) was tested for use as a catalyst of a Fenton-like process in p-nitrophenol (p-NP) wastewater treatment. The results show that HNO₃-modified coal fly ash (HFA) has a better catalytic capacity (96.6% p-NP removal rate) than those (<92% p-NP removal rate) of CFA modified by other acids (HCl, H₂SO₄, and H₃PO₄). The removal rate of the p-NP by the adsorption of HFA is less than 2.96%, which can be thought of as negligible compared to that removed by the catalytic oxidation process. Under the optimum experimental conditions (reaction time = 60 min, CH₂O₂ = 170 mg L⁻¹, CHFA = 10.0 g L⁻¹, pH = 2.0, mixing speed = 150 rpm, and temperature = 25 °C), a 98% p-NP removal rate is observed. HFA has an acute response to the change of temperature and higher temperature is welcomed (9.3% and 98% of the p-NP was removed at 25 and 50 °C, respectively, at 5 min). HFA can be reused 9 times with >91% of the p-NP removal rate, revealing an outstanding catalytic stability and reusability. The catalytic mechanism of HFA was discussed by comparing the physicochemical features of HFA with raw CFA and by proposing the reactions which occur in the Fenton-like process.