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Degradation of methylene blue by dielectric barrier discharge plasma coupled with activated carbon supported on polyurethane foam

Wu, Lihang, Xie, Qinglong, Lv, Yongbo, Zhang, Zhiyong, Wu, Zhenyu, Liang, Xiaojiang, Lu, Meizhen, Nie, Yong
RSC advances 2019 v.9 no.45 pp. 25967-25975
activated carbon, adsorption, chemical oxygen demand, energy efficiency, foams, glass, methylene blue, pollutants, polyurethanes, porous media, synergism
The degradation of methylene blue (MB) using a novel dielectric barrier discharge plasma reactor coupled with activated carbon supported polyurethane foam (AC/PUF) was investigated in this paper. The plasma reactor combining a glass bead-packed bed and a microporous plate was developed. The AC/PUF provided sufficient contact area between carbon media and pollutants and hence revealed a good MB removal capacity. The effects of input voltage and initial MB solution concentration on MB degradation efficiency were examined. Kinetic study indicated that plasma and AC/PUF in the coupled system had a good synergistic effect in MB degradation. The degradation efficiency of 100 ppm MB solution could reach 97.9% with 10 min treatment in the coupled system, which was close to that obtained by plasma treatment alone for 30 min (97.5%). The COD removal in the plasma and AC/PUF coupled system (90.7%) was much higher than that obtained by plasma treatment followed by AC/PUF adsorption (58.3%). In addition, the energy yield (G₅₀) of the coupled system was up to 38.3 g kW⁻¹ h⁻¹, suggesting great energy efficiency of the system. Moreover, repeated use experiments of AC/PUF showed the good utilization potential of the coupled system. Finally, a possible degradation pathway of MB was proposed.