Efficient degradation of trichloroethylene in water using persulfate activated by reduced graphene oxide-iron nanocomposite.Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2015 Nov; 22(22):17876-85.ES
Graphene oxide (GO) and nano-sized zero-valent iron-reduced graphene oxide (nZVI-rGO) composite were prepared. The GO and nZVI-rGO composite were characterized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), Fourier transform infrared (FTIR), energy-dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), and Raman spectroscopy. The size of nZVI was about 6 nm as observed by TEM. The system of nZVI-rGO and persulfate (PS) was used for the degradation of trichloroethylene (TCE) in water, and showed 26.5% more efficiency as compared to nZVI/PS system. The different parameters were studied to determine the efficiency of nZVI-rGO to activate the PS system for the TCE degradation. By increasing the PS amount, TCE removal was also improved while no obvious effect was observed by varying the catalyst loading. Degradation was decreased as the TCE initial concentration was increased from 20 to 100 mg/L. Moreover, when initial solution pH was increased, efficiency deteriorated to 80%. Bicarbonate showed more negative effect on TCE removal among the solution matrix. To better understand the effects of radical species in the system, the scavenger tests were performed. The •SO4(-) and •O2(-) were predominant species responsible for TCE removal. The nZVI-rGO-activated PS process shows potential applications in remediation of highly toxic organic contaminants such as TCE present in the groundwater. Graphical abstract Persulfate activated by reduced graphene oxide and nano-sized zero-valent iron composite can be used for efficient degradation of trichloroethylene (TCE) in water.