Mineralization of phenol by a heterogeneous ultrasound\Fe-SBA-15\H2O2 process: multivariate study by factorial design of experiments
A novel heterogeneous catalyst has been used for the oxidation of aqueous solutions of phenol by catalytic wet peroxide oxidation assisted by ultrasound irradiation. This composite catalyst material that contains crystalline hematite particles embedded into a mesostructured SBA-15 matrix was used successfully in the oxidation of phenol by heterogeneous Fenton and photo-Fenton processes. Ultrasound is found to enhance the activity of the catalyst in the process, without prejudice to the stability of the iron supported species. The influence of different variables, such as hydrogen peroxide concentration or catalyst loadings in the reaction was studied by factorial design of experiments. Catalyst loadings of 0.6 g/L and a concentration of hydrogen peroxide close to twice the stoichiometric amount yield a remarkable organic mineralization, accompanied by excellent catalyst stability. The coupled US/Fe-SBA-15/H2O2 process at room temperature is revealed as a promising technique for wastewater treatment.
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