Electrochemical degradation of organic pollutants using three-dimensional electrode of RVC/PbO2

Principal Investigator:

Luis Augusto Martins Ruotolo

Awardee:

Home Research Institution: Centro de Ciências Exatas e de Tecnologia (CCET). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos, SP, Brazil
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Chemical Engineering
Support type:Regular Research Awards
Grant number: 12/04168-0
Duration: August 01, 2013 - July 31, 2015
Abstract
The problems caused by the growing of the environmental contamination by pesticides have been calling the attention of researches, authorities, and population in general since their effects have been more present in our lives. Environmental contamination can be avoided by using, in most cases, biological treatments. However, some classes of compounds, among them many pesticides, are refractory to this kind of treatment and require different technologies in order to oxidize the organic compound. In this context, the electrochemical technology emerged as an alternative which is environmentally compatible. Other advantages are elimination of transport and storage of hazardous chemicals, reduction of the workmanship, and ease to automatization. Despite these advantages, for the effective use of the electrochemical technology for effluent treatment some drawbacks must be overcome, being the principal the mass transfer restriction resulting from the low concentration of these compounds in industrial effluents, which affects the current efficiency (CE) and the energy consumption (EC). In order to overcome this difficult and minimize EC, it is proposed in this project the electrochemical oxidation using three-dimensional electrodes of reticulated vitreous carbon (RVC) covered by PbO2 as electroactive material. In the first part of this project it will be developed the process for PbO2 electrodeposition on RVC using a flow reactor. Variables such as current density, temperature, and flow rate will be studied in these experiments. The second part, the pesticide degradation in a flow reactor will be studied as a function of operational variables such as current density, flow rate, pH, temperature, and chloride concentration. These variables were chosen because they have influence on the charge and mass transfer aspects concerning to electrochemical oxidation. The data obtained will the systematically analyzed using a Box-Behnken factorial design in order to optimize CE and EC. The intermediate compounds formed during the electroxidation will be identified and quantified using HPLC-MS. (AU)

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