The Science of the total environment

Oxidative degradation of propachlor by ferrous and copper ion activated persulfate.

PMID 22226398


The process of in situ chemical oxidation (ISCO) by persulfate (S(2)O(8)(2-)) can be accelerated by metal ion activation, which more effectively degrades subsurface pollutants by enhancing sulfate radical (SO(4)(-)) generation. This study compared the results of propachlor degradation by Cu(2+) and Fe(2+) activated persulfate and revealed differing degradation kinetics and mechanisms between the two types of activation system. The activation of persulfate by Fe(2+) ions generally resulted in rapid degradation in the early stage, but was accompanied by a dramatic decrease in efficiency due to the rapid depletion of Fe(2+) by the sulfate radicals generated. In contrast, the Cu(2+) activated persulfate had a longer lasting degradation effect and a proportionally greater degradation enhancement at elevated Cu(2+) concentrations. An optimal Fe(2+) concentration should be sought to activate the persulfate, as a high Fe(2+) concentration of 2.5mM or above, as was used in this study, may inhibit propachlor degradation due to the competitive consumption of sulfate radicals by the excess Fe(2+) ions. Higher temperatures (55°C compared with 30°C) resulted in enhanced metal activation, particularly with the Cu(2+) activated system. Furthermore, acidic conditions were found to be more favorable for propachlor degradation by metal activated persulfate. The ecotoxicity of degraded propachlor samples, which was indicated by average well color development (AWCD) for its microbial community activity, was confirmed to be decreased during the degradation processes with these two ions activated persulfate.

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Propachlor, PESTANAL®, analytical standard