This work aims to present experimental results on the treatment of methylene blue contaminated waters using heterogeneous catalytic ozonation promoted by volcanic sand. The effect of pH (2–8), and the presence of radical scavengers (acetate ions) in homogeneous and heterogeneous systems are evaluated at laboratory scale. Heterogeneous catalytic ozonation using volcanic sand increases methylene blue removal rate. In the presence of free radical scavengers, only a 37% reduction on methylene blue removal rate is observed in the heterogeneous system, as compared with 70% when homogeneous ozonation is used. The results obtained here indicate the importance of chemical surface properties on methylene blue oxidation reactions, suggesting that acid surface sites of volcanic sand play a key role on the reaction mechanism.
Keywords: advanced oxidation processes, catalytic ozonation, cationic dyes, methylene blue, ozone, volcanic sand