Electrochemical enhancement of solar photocatalysis: degradation of endocrine disruptor bisphenol-A on Ti/TiO2 films.Water Res. 2011 Apr; 45(9):2996-3004.WR
The photoelectrocatalytic oxidation over immobilized Ti/TiO(2) films in the presence of simulated solar light was investigated for the degradation of bisphenol-A (BPA) in water. The catalyst, consisting of 75:25 anatase:rutile, was prepared by a sol-gel method and characterized by cyclic voltammetry, X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. Experiments were conducted to assess the effect of applied current (0.02-0.32 mA/cm(2)), TiO(2) loading (1.3-9.2 mg), BPA concentration (120-820 μg/L), initial solution pH (1 and 7.5) and the aqueous matrix (pure water and treated effluent) on BPA photoelectrocatalytic degradation which was monitored by high performance liquid chromatography equipped with a fluorescence detector. The reaction was favored at anodic currents up to 0.04 mA/cm(2) and lower substrate concentrations, but it was hindered by the presence of residual organic matter and radical scavengers (e.g. bicarbonates) in treated effluents. Moreover, a pseudo-first order kinetic model could fit the experimental data well with the apparent reaction constant taking values between 2.9 and 32.4 10(-3)/min. The degradation of BPA by pure photocatalysis or electrochemical oxidation alone was also studied leading to partial substrate removal. In all cases, the contribution of applied potential to photocatalytic degradation was synergistic with the photocatalytic efficiency increasing between 24% and 97% possibly due to a more efficient separation and utilization of the photogenerated charge carriers. The effect of photoelectrocatalysis on the ecotoxic and estrogenic properties of BPA was also evaluated measuring the bioluminescence inhibition of Vibrio fischeri and performing the yeast estrogen screening assay, respectively.