Tertiary treatment of pulp mill wastewater by solar photo-Fenton

Marco S Lucas, José A Peres, Carlos Amor, Lucía Prieto-Rodríguez, Manuel I Maldonado, Sixto Malato
Journal of Hazardous Materials 2012 July 30, 225: 173-81
This work reports on pulp mill wastewater (PMW) tertiary treatment by Fenton (Fe(2+)/H(2)O(2)) and solar photo-Fenton (Fe(2+)/H(2)O(2)/UV) processes in a pilot plant based on compound parabolic collectors (CPCs). Solar photo-Fenton reaction is much more efficient than the respective dark reaction under identical experimental conditions. It leads to DOC mineralisation, COD and total polyphenols (TP) removal higher than 90%. The solar photo-Fenton experiment with 5mg Fe L(-1) reaches 90% of DOC mineralisation with 31kJ L(-1) of UV energy and 50mM of H(2)O(2). The initial non-biodegradability of PMW, as shown by respirometry assays and BOD(5)/COD ratio, can be changed after a solar photo-Fenton treatment. Experiments with 20 and 50mg Fe L(-1) revealed that solar photo-Fenton can reach the same DOC degradation (90%), however, consuming less H(2)O(2) and time. Diluting the initial organic load to 50% also diminishes the dosage of H(2)O(2) and the necessary reaction time to achieve high DOC removals. Accordingly, solar photo-Fenton can be considered an alternative or complementary process to improve the performance of a biologic treatment and, subsequently, achieve legal limits on discharge into natural waters.

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