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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract -

Treatment of Four Biorefractory Contaminants in Soils Using Catalyzed Hydrogen Peroxide


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 20 No. 4, p. 832-838
    Received: Oct 26, 1990

    * Corresponding author(s):
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  1. Bryan W. Tyre,
  2. Richard J. Watts * and
  3. Glenn C. Miller
  1. Washoe County Department of Health, Reno, NV 89520;
    Dep. of Civil and Environ. Eng., Washington State Univ., Pullman, WA 99164;
    Division of Biochemistry, Univ. of Nevada, Reno, NV 89557.



The treatment of soil contaminated with pentachlorophenol, trifluralin [2,6-dinitro-N, N-dipropyl-4-(trifluoromethyl) benzenamine], hexadecane, and dieldrin (3,4,5,6,9,9-hexachloro-1a,2,2a,3,6,6a,7,7a-octahydro-2,7:3,6-dimethanonaphth[2,3-b]oxirene) using catalyzed hydrogen peroxide [H202 and iron(II)] was investigated in a soil of low development with organic C ranging from 2000 mg kg–1 to 16 000 mg kg–1. Soil treatment was conducted at pH 3 with 240 and 400 mg L–1 iron additions and 120 000 mg L–1 H2O2. Pentachlorophenol and trifluralin degradation rates decreased as a function of soil organic C content. However, soil organic C had no effect on the degradation rates of dieldrin and hexadecane. In addition, the four contaminants degraded at equal rates with soil containing organic C > 10 000 mg kg–1. The ratio of first-order rate constants for contaminant degradation to hydrogen peroxide consumption (kcontaminant/kh2O2) was used as an empirical measure of treatment efficiency. These ratios were sensitive to both the soil organic C content and to the concentration of iron added during treatment. The efficiency ratios were highest for treatment with no iron addition; these data suggest that iron minerals and H2O2 provide a system in which Fenton-like oxidations are catalyzed. The ability of iron minerals and H2O2 to oxidize pentachlorophenol was evaluated in goethite-, hematite-, and magnetite-silica sand at pH 3. Pentachlorophenol was degraded in the mineral-silica sand systems, which was verified by the loss of organic C and the stoichiometric recovery of chloride.

This research was funded by the USEPA through Assistance Agreement no. R-814425-01-0 and by the National Science Foundation through Research Equipment Grant no. CES-8704878.

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