Photodegradation of nitroaromatic compounds in aqueous solutions in the UV/H2O2 process

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Courtesy of IOS Press

Photodegradation of nitrobenzene and nitrophenols in aqueous solutions by means of UV/H2O2 process was studied in the Rayox batch reactors. Three nitrophenol isomers were identified as main photoproducts in the irradiated NB aqueous solutions. The distribution of nitrophenol isomers follows the order p-> m-> o-nitrophenol. Other intermediates detected include nitrohydroquinone, nitrocatechol, catechol, benzoquinone, phenol, nitrate/nitrite ions, formic acid, glyoxylic acid, maleic acid, oxalic acid and some aliphatic ketones and aldehydes. The degradation of nitrobenzene and nitrophenols at initial stages follows the first-order kinetics and the decay rate constants for nitrobenzene(NB) are around 10-3-10-2s-1 and for nitrophenols are around 10-2s-1. The decomposition of H2O2 in the presence of NB and each nitrophenol isomers follows zero-order kinetics. The quantum yields at initial stages for NB decay were estimated around 0.30 to 0.36, and for NPs decay is around 0.31-0.54.

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