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Water Res. 2012 Apr 15;46(6):1847-57. doi: 10.1016/j.watres.2012.01.002. Epub 2012 Jan 8.

Optimization of electrochemical dechlorination of trichloroethylene in reducing electrolytes.

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  • 1Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, Northeastern University, Boston, MA 02115, USA.

Abstract

Electrochemical dechlorination of trichloroethylene (TCE) in aqueous solution is investigated in a closed, liquid-recirculation system. The anodic reaction of cast iron generates ferrous species, creating a chemically reducing electrolyte (negative ORP value). The reduction of TCE on the cathode surface is enhanced under this reducing electrolyte because of the absence of electron competition. In the presence of the iron anode, the performances of different cathodes are compared in a recirculated electrolysis system. The copper foam shows superior capability for dechlorination of aqueous TCE. Electrolysis by cast iron anode and copper foam cathode is further optimized though a multivariable experimental design and analysis. The conductivity of the electrolyte is identified as an important factor for both final elimination efficiency (FEE) of TCE and specific energy consumption. The copper foam electrode exhibits high TCE elimination efficiency in a wide range of initial TCE concentration. Under coulostatic conditions, the optimal conditions to achieve the highest FEE are 9.525 mm thick copper foam electrode, 40 mA current and 0.042 mol L(-1) Na(2)SO(4). This novel electrolysis system is proposed to remediate groundwater contaminated by chlorinated organic solvents, or as an improved iron electrocoagulation process capable of treating the wastewater co-contaminated with chlorinated compounds.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
22264798
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3288245
Free PMC Article

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