Peroxymonosulfate (PMS)-based advanced oxidation processes (PMS-AOPs) as an efficient strategy for organic degradation are highly dependent on catalyst design and structured active sites. However, the identification of the active sites and their relationship with reaction mechanisms for organic degradation are not fully understood for a composite catalyst due to the complex structure. Herein, we developed a family of Co encapsulated in N-doped carbons (Co-PCN) with tailored types and contents of active sites via manipulated pyrolysis for PMS activation and ciprofloxacin (CIP) degradation, focusing on the correlation of active sites to generated reactive species and degradation routes of organics. The structure–function relationships between the different active sites in Co-PCN catalysts and reactive oxygen species (ROS), as well as bond breaking position of CIP, were revealed through regression analysis and density functional theory calculation. Co–Nx, O–C═O, C═O, graphitic N, and defects in Co-PCN stimulate the generation of 1O2 for oxidizing the C–C bond in the piperazine ring of CIP into C═O. The substitution of F by OH and hydroxylation of the piperazine ring might be induced by SO4•– and •OH, whose formation was affected by C–O, Co(0), Co–Nx, graphitic N, and defects. The findings provided new insights into reaction mechanisms in PMS-AOP systems and rational design of catalysts for ROS-oriented degradation of pollutants.
The invention relates to composite compositions including a carbonaceous material and a photocatalyst. The invention includes compositions and various methods, including methods for removing one or more contaminants from a substance such as air, soil, and water.
Fenton reaction is an effective method to remove refractory organics such as carbamazepine (CBZ) from water streams. Nevertheless, its application is greatly compromised by extra hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) addition and iron mud accumulation. Herein, Fenton-like process with in situ produced H2O2 by biosynthesized palladium nanoparticles (bioPd-NPs) and natural iron-bearing clay minerals is proposed for CBZ degradation. The bioPd-NPs prepared by Shewanella loihica PV-4 were in the size range of 5–20 nm, which catalyzed the in situ production of H2O2 from formic acid (FA) and oxygen. Then the in situ generated H2O2 underwent Fenton-like reactions with nontronite for CBZ degradation. With bioPd-NPs and nontronite dosage of 1 g/L and FA concentration of 20 mM, the complete CBZ (10 mg/L) degradation was achieved within 60 min. Oxidative radicals such as HO· and H2O2 generated in our constructed system played key roles in CBZ degradation. Intermediates/products identification and theoretical calculation revealed that hydroxylation was the main CBZ degradation pathway. This work provides a promising Fenton-like technology for elimination of CBZ from environment with prevention of additional H2O2 supplementation and excessive iron mud production.
Recently, several studies have been conscious of the promotion effect of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), a self-decay product of ferrate (Fe(VI)), on Fe(VI) to oxidize contaminations, but the pivotal activation mechanism has not been thoroughly evaluated. This work aims to compare and reveal the promoting mechanism of H2O2 in Fe(VI) and Fe(VI)−H2O2 processes, and to illustrate the practical use potential of Fe(VI)−H2O2 system. Many lines of evidence verified the involvement of •OH and O2•− in pollutant degradation were excluded in Fe(VI) and Fe(VI)−H2O2 systems, meaning that high dosage of H2O2 cannot trigger an activation pathway different from in-situ H2O2. The better oxidation performance of the Fe(VI)−H2O2 system than Fe(VI) alone was ascribed to the catalytic role of in-situ and ex-situ H2O2, which can directly and/ or indirectly facilitate the formation of Fe(IV) and Fe(V). Considering the structural similarity of peroxymonosulfate (PMS) and peroxydisulfate (PDS) with H2O2 as well as their universality in water pollutant remediation, the oxidation properties and reactive oxidants of Fe(VI)−PMS and Fe(VI)−PDS processes were also examined. Besides, the Fe(VI)−H2O2 system suffered from less restriction by inorganic ions and natural organic matter, and exhibited satisfactory pollutant removal effects in real water. Overall, this work provides a further and comprehensive cognition about the role of H2O2 in Fe(VI) and Fe(VI)−H2O2 systems.
Abstract We investigated the ice nucleation activities of humic-like substances (HULIS), an important component of organic aerosol (OA), derived from atmospheric and biomass burning aerosols, and produced from aqueous-phase chemical reactions. Respective HULIS can effectively trigger heterogeneous IN under mixed-phase cloud conditions. HULIS ice active entities (IAE) were aggregates in size between 0.02 and 0.10 μm. At −20°C, the IAE numbers per unit HULIS mass varied from 213 to 8.7 × 104 mg−1. Such results were different than those detected in aquatic humic substances (HS) from previous studies, implying using HS as surrogates may not robustly estimate the IAE concentrations in the real atmosphere. Combining the abundance of atmospheric HULIS with the present results suggests that HULIS could be an important IAE contributor in the atmosphere where other ice nucleating particle species, such as dust and biological particles, are either low in concentration or absent.
The large consumption of acetaminophen (APAP) worldwide and unsatisfactory treatment efficiencies by conventional wastewater treatment processes give rise to the seeking of new technology for its effective removal. Herein, we proposed a facile one-step hydrothermal method to synthesize defective iron deposited titanate nanotubes (Fe/TNTs) for peroxymonosulfate (PMS) activation and APAP degradation. The retarded first-order reaction rate of APAP degradation by Fe/TNTs was 5.1 times higher than that of neat TNTs. Characterizations indicated iron deposition effectively induced oxygen vacancies and Ti3+, facilitating the electrical conductivity and PMS binding affinity of Fe/TNTs. Besides, oxygen vacancies could act as an electron mediator through PMS activation by iron. Moreover, the formation of Fe–O–Ti bond facilitated the synergistic redox coupling between Fe and Ti, further enhancing the PMS activation. SO4•− was the major radical, causing C–N bond cleavage and decreasing the overall toxicity. In contrast, APAP degradation by neat TNTs-PMS system mainly works through nonradical reaction. The Fe/TNTs activated PMS showed desired APAP removal under mild water chemistry conditions and good reusability. This work is expected to expand the potential application of titanate nanomaterials for PMS activation, and shed light on facile synthesis of oxygen defective materials for sulfate-radical-based advanced oxidation processes.
Potassium periodate (PI, KIO4) was readily activated by Fe(II) under acidic conditions, resulting in the enhanced abatement of organic contaminants in 2 min, with the decay ratios of the selected pollutants even outnumbered those in the Fe(II)/peroxymonosulfate and Fe(II)/peroxydisulfate processes under identical conditions. Both 18O isotope labeling techniques using methyl phenyl sulfoxide (PMSO) as the substrate and X-ray absorption near-edge structure spectroscopy provided conclusive evidences for the generation of high-valent iron–oxo species (Fe(IV)) in the Fe(II)/PI process. Density functional theory calculations determined that the reaction of Fe(II) with PI followed the formation of a hydrogen bonding complex between Fe(H2O)62+ and IO4(H2O)−, ligand exchange, and oxygen atom transfer, consequently generating Fe(IV) species. More interestingly, the unexpected detection of 18O-labeled hydroxylated PMSO not only favored the simultaneous generation of ·OH but also demonstrated that ·OH was indirectly produced through the self-decay of Fe(IV) to form H2O2 and the subsequent Fenton reaction. In addition, IO4– was not transformed into the undesired iodine species (i.e., HOI, I2, and I3–) but was converted to nontoxic iodate (IO3–). This study proposed an efficient and environmental friendly process for the rapid removal of emerging contaminants and enriched the understandings on the evolution mechanism of ·OH in Fe(IV)-mediated processes.
Photocatalytic nitrogen fixation represents an effective technology for the artificial production of ammonia from atmospheric nitrogen, a critical step toward a sustainable economy. Bismuth oxyhalides (BiOX, X = Cl, Br, and I) have emerged as viable catalysts for photocatalytic reduction of nitrogen into ammonia, due to their unique electronic structures and optical properties. Herein, the recent progress of BiOX-based photocatalysts for nitrogen fixation, with a focus on the reaction mechanism and pathways, materials preparation, and strategies of structural engineering for enhanced performance, is summarized. The article is concluded with a perspective where the promises and challenges of bismuth-based photocatalysts for nitrogen reduction to ammonia are highlighted, along with possible future research directions.
Acetaminophen (ACE) is commonly used in analgesic and antipyretic drug, which is hardly removed by traditional wastewater treatment processes. Herein, amorphous Co(OH)2 nanocages were explored as peroxymonosulfate (PMS) activator for efficient degradation of ACE. In the presence of amorphous Co(OH)2 nanocages, 100% of ACE removal was reached within 2 min with a reaction rate constant k1 = 3.68 min−1 at optimum pH 5, which was much better than that of crystalline β-Co(OH)2 and Co3O4. Amorphous materials (disorder atom arrangement) with hollow structures possess large specific surface area, more reactive sites, and abundant vacancies structures, which could efficiently facilitate the catalytic redox reactions. The radicals quenching experiment demonstrated that SO4− radicals dominated the ACE degradation rather than OH radicals. The mechanism of ACE degradation was elucidated by the analysis of degradation intermediates and theoretical calculation, indicating that the electrophilic SO4− and OH tend to attack the atoms of ACE with high Fukui index (f −). Our finding highlights the remarkable advantages of amorphous materials as heterogeneous catalysts in sulfate radicals-based AOPs and sheds new lights on water treatment for the degradation of emerging organic contaminants.
This study reports the different degradation mechanisms of carbamazepine (CBZ) and diclofenac (DCF) by single-atom Barium (Ba) embedded g-C3N4. Single-atom Ba is anchored onto g-C3N4 by forming ionic bond with triazine ring, thus greatly enhances the photocatalytic activity with an atom ratio of 1.78%. CBZ undergoes a typical photocatalysis mechanism, while DCF is degraded via a photosensitization-like process, which does not need band gap excitation of photocatalyst. By means of Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculation, the selectivity is found to be related with the different valence excitation modes of CBZ and DCF. Specifically, CBZ undergoes a local excitation, which does not obviously affect molecular configuration. In contrast, DCF undergoes a charge transfer excitation, which significantly changes the reactive sites distribution and facilitates photosensitization-like degradation. Due to the different degradation mechanism, the effects of pH, co-existed anions, and water matrix are also different. Since photosensitization-like mechanism does not rely on photo-generated holes mediated oxidation, the degradation efficient of DCF shows higher anti-interference capacity in real water.
Covalent organic frameworks (COFs) have great application potentials in photocatalytic water treatment. By using p-phenylenediamine with different numbers and locations of heterocyclic nitrogen atoms as a precursor, five types of COFs with different nitrogen positions were synthesized. We found that Cr(VI) photoreduction,Escherichia coli inactivation, and paracetamol degradation by COFs were heterocyclic nitrogen location-dependent. Particularly, the photocatalytic performance for all three tested pollutants by five types of COFs followed the order of the best performance for COF-PDZ with two ortho position heterocyclic N atoms, medium for COF-PMD with two meta position heterocyclic N atoms, and COF-PZ with two para position heterocyclic N atoms, and COF-PD with a single heterocyclic N atom, the worst performance for COF-1 without a heterocyclic N atom. Compared to the other COFs, COF-PDZ contained improved quantum efficiency and thus enhanced generation of electrons. The lower energy barriers and larger energy gaps of COF-PDZ contributed to its improved quantum efficiencies. The stronger affinity to Cr(VI) with lower adsorption energy of COF-PDZ also contributed to its excellent Cr(VI) reduction performance. By transferring into a more stable keto form, COF-PDZ showed great stability through five regeneration and reuse cycles. Overall, this study provided an insight into the synthesis of high-performance structure-dependent COF-based photocatalysts.
PDINH/MIL-88A(Fe) composites (PxMy) were fabricated from MIL-88A(Fe) and perylene-34,910-tetracarboxylic diimide (PDINH) via facile ball-milling strategy. The optimum P25M175 exhibited outstanding degradation performance toward chloroquine phosphate (CQ) by activating peroxydisulfate (PDS) under low power LED visible light. The synergistic effects of photocatalytic activations of PDS via the direct electron transfer PDS activation over P25M175 and indirect electron transfer PDS activation over pristine MIL-88A contributed to the boosted CQ degradation efficiency. The active species capture experimental data and electron spin resonance (ESR) determinations revealed that both active radicals (like SO4−, OH, O2−, h+) and nonradical singlet oxygen (1O2) participated in the CQ decomposition. The CQ degradation pathways and the toxicity evaluation of the intermediates were proposed based on LC–MS determination and DFT calculation. Also, P25M175 demonstrated good reusability and stability. The findings within this work offered deep insights into the mechanisms of organic pollutants degradation via photocatalysis-activated SR-AOP over Fe-MOF photocatalyst.
Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) has drawn increasing attention due to its omnipresence and adverse health effects. We prepared a new adsorptive photocatalyst, Ga/TNTs@AC, based on activated carbon and TiO2, and tested the adsorption and subsequent solid-phase photodegradation of PFOS. Ga/TNTs@AC showed faster adsorption kinetics and higher affinity for PFOS than the parent AC, and could degrade 75.0% and mineralize 66.2% of pre-sorbed PFOS within 4-h UV irradiation. The efficient PFOS photodegradation also regenerates Ga/TNTs@AC, allowing for repeated uses without invoking chemical regenerants. The superior photoactivity is attributed to the oxygen vacancies, which not only suppressed recombination of the e−/h+ pairs, but also facilitated O2− generation. Both h+ and O2− played critical roles in the PFOS degradation, which starts with cleavage of the sulfonate group and converts it into PFOA that is then decarboxylated and defluorinated following the stepwise defluorination mechanism. Ga/TNTs@AC holds the potential for more cost-effective PFOS degradation.
Quantitative identification on reactive sites of target organic molecule during photocatalysis can help to get deep insight into the pollutant degradation pathway and energy evolution process. In this study, a new class of silica aerogel supported TiO2 (TiO2/SiO2) photocatalysts were fabricated via a two-step approach, and applied for adsorption and photocatalytic degradation of phenanthrene. Anatase crystalline structure was formed upon calcination at 400 and 600 °C, while mixed crystal interphases of anatase and rutile were generated at 800 °C (anatase:rutile = 0.67:0.33). The higher calcination temperature resulted in better crystallinity of TiO2, higher photocatalytic activity, and reduced adsorption affinity toward phenanthrene. TiO2/SiO2-800 (TiO2/SiO2 calcined at 800 °C) showed minimal phenanthrene uptake ( 5.2%) but the strongest photocatalytic activity, and it was able to completely degrade phenanthrene within 3 h. The SiO2 aerogel component in the composite enabled the pre-concentration of phenanthrene on the photoactive sites, while the nanoscale mixed-phases of anatase and rutile of TiO2/SiO2-800 act as an efficient transfer medium for photo-induced charge carriers. Moreover, the formed Ti–O–Si linkage in TiO2/SiO2-800 induced formation of Ti3+ under solar light irradiation, promoting photoexcited electron trap and separation of electron-hole pairs. Based on the degraded phenanthrene intermediates/products, theoretical calculations according to the density functional theory (DFT) reveal that the atoms of phenanthrene with high electrophilic Fukui index (f -) are the most reactive sites towards the radicals. Potential energy surface profile for phenanthrene degradation further reveals the intermediates energy evaluation via radicals attack.
A highly solar active AgBr/h-MoO3 composite was constructed by a facile precipitation method, and the charge separation tuning was achieved by photoreduction of AgBr. The photoreduced Ag0 on AgBr/h-MoO3 acted as charge transfer bridge to form Z-scheme heterostructure, while the high degree of Ag reduction converted the material into type-II heterostructure. The synthesized optimal material promoted charge separation and visible light activity due to the incorporation of highly solar active AgBr, which showed ca. 2 times activity on trimethoprim (TMP) degradation than h-MoO3. The contribution of reactive species on TMP degradation followed the order of O2− > 1O2 > h+, which agree well with the proposed charge separation mechanism. The photocatalytic degradation mechanism of TMP was proposed based on the radical quenching, intermediate analysis and DFT calculation. The toxicity analysis based on QSAR calculation showed that part of the degradation intermediates are more toxic than TMP, thus sufficient mineralization are required to eliminate the potential risks of treated water. Moreover, the material showed high stability and activity after four reusing cycles, and it is applicable to treat contaminants in various water matrix. This work is expected to provide new insight into the charge separation tuning mechanism for the AgX based heterojunction, and rational design of highly efficient photocatalysts for organic contaminants degradation by solar irradiation.
Degradation pathway is important for the study of carbamazepine (CBZ) removal in advanced oxidation processes (AOPs). Generally, degradation pathways are speculated based on intermediate identification and basic chemical rules. However, this semiempirical strategy is sometimes time-consuming and baseless. To improve the situation, a mini meta-analysis was first conducted for the degradation pathways of CBZ in AOPs. Then, the rationality of the pathways was analyzed by Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculation. Results show that the degradation pathways of CBZ in various AOPs has high similarity, and the reactive sites predicted by Fukui function fitted well with the data retrieved from literatures. In addition, molecule configuration of degradation intermediates was found to play a very important roles on degradation pathway. The study reveals that computational chemistry is a useful tool for degradation pathway speculation in AOPs.
Herein, a silicate-enhanced flow-through electro-Fenton system with a nanoconfined catalyst was rationally designed and demonstrated for the highly efficient, rapid, and selective degradation of antibiotic tetracycline. The key active component of this system is the Fe2O3 nanoparticle filled carbon nanotube (Fe2O3-in-CNT) filter. Under an electric field, this composite filter enabled in situ H2O2 generation, which was converted to reactive oxygen species accompanied by the redox cycling of Fe3+/Fe2+. The presence of the silicate electrolyte significantly boosted the H2O2 yield by preventing the O–O bond dissociation of the adsorbed OOH*. Compared with the surface coated Fe2O3 on the CNT (Fe2O3-out-CNT) filter, the Fe2O3-in-CNT filter demonstrated 1.65 times higher kL value toward the degradation of the antibiotic tetracycline. Electron paramagnetic resonance and radical quenching tests synergistically verified that the dominant radical species was the 1O2 or HO· in the confined Fe2O3-in-CNT or unconfined Fe2O3-out-CNT system, respectively. The flow-through configuration offered improved tetracycline degradation kinetics, which was 5.1 times higher (at flow rate of 1.5 mL min–1) than that of a conventional batch reactor. Liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry measurements and theoretical calculations suggested reduced toxicity of fragments of tetracycline formed. This study provides a novel strategy by integrating state-of-the-art material science, Fenton chemistry, and microfiltration technology for environmental remediation.
The potential exposure of titanate nanotubes (TNTs) to wildlife and humans may occur as a result of increased use and application as functional nanomaterials. However, there is a dearth of knowledge regarding the pathways of uptake and excretion of TNTs and their toxicity in cells. In this study, three strains of the Tetrahymena genus of free-living ciliates, including a wild type strain (SB210) and two mutant strains (SB255: mucocyst-deficient; NP1: temperature-sensitive “mouthless’’), were used to study the pathways of uptake and excretion and evaluate the cytotoxicity of TNTs. The three Tetrahymena strains were separately exposed to 0, 0.01, 0.1, 1 or 10 mg/L of TNTs, and cells were collected at different time points for quantification of intracellular TNTs (e.g., 5, 10, 20, 40, 60, 90 and 120 min) and evaluation of cytotoxicity (12 and 24 h). TNT contents in NP1 and SB255 were greater or comparable to the contents in SB210 while exposure to 10 mg/L TNTs in 120 min. Furthermore, exposure to 10 mg/L TNTs for 24 h caused greater decreases in cell density of NP1 (38.2 %) and SB255 (36.8 %) compared with SB210 (26.5 %) and upregulated the expression of caspase 15 in SB210. Taken together, our results suggested that TNT uptake by pinocytosis and excretion by exocytosis in Tetrahymena, and the exposure could cause cytotoxicity which can offer novel insights into the accumulation kinetics of nanotubes and even nanomaterials in single cell.
In this study, we designed an integrated electrochemical filtration system for catalytic activation of peroxymonosulfate (PMS) and degradation of aqueous microcontaminants. Composites of carbon nanotube (CNT) and nanoscale zero valence copper (nZVC) were developed to serve as high-performance catalysts, electrode and filtration media simultaneously. We observed both radical and nonradical reaction pathways, which collectively contributed to the degradation of model pollutants. Congo red was completely removed via a single-pass through the nZVCCNT filter (τ <2 s) at neutral pH. The rapid kinetics of Congo red degradation were maintained across a wide pH range (from 3.0–7.0), in complicated matrixes (e.g., tap water and lake water), and for the degradation of a wide array of persistent organic contaminants. The superior activity of nZVCCNT stems from the boosted redox cycles of Cu2+/Cu+ in the presence of an external electric field. The flow-through design remarkably outperformed the conventional batch system due to the convection-enhanced mass transport. Mechanism studies suggested that the carbonyl group and electrophilic oxygen of CNT served as electron donor and electron acceptor, respectively, to activate PMS to generate •OH and 1O2 via one-electron transport. The electron-deficient Cu atoms are prone to react with PMS via surface hydroxyl group to produce reactive intermediates (Cu2+-O-O-SO3−), and then 1O2 will be generated by breaking the coordination bond of the metastable intermediate. The study will provide a green strategy for the remediation of organic pollution by a highly efficient and integrated system based on catalytic oxidation, electrochemistry, and nano-filtration techniques.