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Chemical Oxidation Technologies: Ultraviolet Light/Hydrogen Peroxide, Fenton's Reagent, and Titanium Dioxide-Assisted Photocatalysis

Chemical Oxidation Technologies: Ultraviolet Light/Hydrogen Peroxide, Fenton's Reagent, and Titanium Dioxide-Assisted Photocatalysis


The application status and potential of three chemical oxidation treatment methods which generate powerful oxidants (hydroxyl radicals): ultraviolet light (UV)/hydrogen peroxide (H 2 O 2 ) process, Fenton's reagent treatment, and titanium dioxide (TiO 2 )-assisted photocatalytic degradation, are described and discussed. These oxidation methods are known to effectively degrade and, in several cases, mineralize contaminants ranging from inorganic compounds (such as cyanides) to chlorinated aliphatic compounds and complex aromatic compounds in reaction times on the order of a few minutes to a few hours. Of the three oxidation systems discussed, the technology for the UV/H 2 O 2 process is the most advanced, with numerous successful full-scale treatment units already in existence. Applications of both the Fenton's reagent and TiO 2 -assisted photodegradation processes are currently being developed, with the concepts proven in numerous laboratory-scale studies for a wide range of contaminants. However, both of these processes have only been studied at the pilot/field scale to a limited extent. The application of Fenton's reagent as a pretreatment step prior to biological treatment for industrial wastes and contaminated soils appears promising. Improved system configuration and quantum efficiency of photoreactors are likely to improve the economics of TiO 2 -assisted photodegradation for groundwater treatment, especially with the use of solar illumination.
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