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Discovering the Importance of ClO in a Coupled Electrochemical System for the Simultaneous Removal of Carbon and Nitrogen from Secondary Coking Wastewater Effluent

  • Wenxiao Zheng
    Wenxiao Zheng
    The Key Lab of Pollution Control and Ecosystem Restoration in Industry Clusters, Ministry of Education, School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
  • Liuyi Zhu
    Liuyi Zhu
    The Key Lab of Pollution Control and Ecosystem Restoration in Industry Clusters, Ministry of Education, School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
    More by Liuyi Zhu
  • Sheng Liang
    Sheng Liang
    The Key Lab of Pollution Control and Ecosystem Restoration in Industry Clusters, Ministry of Education, School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
    More by Sheng Liang
  • Jinshao Ye
    Jinshao Ye
    Guangdong Key Laboratory of Environmental Pollution and Health, School of Environment, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, P. R. China
    More by Jinshao Ye
  • Xin Yang
    Xin Yang
    School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, P. R. China
    More by Xin Yang
  • Zhenchao Lei
    Zhenchao Lei
    The Key Lab of Pollution Control and Ecosystem Restoration in Industry Clusters, Ministry of Education, School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
    More by Zhenchao Lei
  • Zhang Yan
    Zhang Yan
    The Key Lab of Pollution Control and Ecosystem Restoration in Industry Clusters, Ministry of Education, School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
    More by Zhang Yan
  • Yongdong Li
    Yongdong Li
    The Key Lab of Pollution Control and Ecosystem Restoration in Industry Clusters, Ministry of Education, School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
    More by Yongdong Li
  • Chaohai Wei
    Chaohai Wei
    The Key Lab of Pollution Control and Ecosystem Restoration in Industry Clusters, Ministry of Education, School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
    More by Chaohai Wei
  • , and 
  • Chunhua Feng*
    Chunhua Feng
    The Key Lab of Pollution Control and Ecosystem Restoration in Industry Clusters, Ministry of Education, School of Environment and Energy, South China University of Technology, Guangzhou 510006, P. R. China
    *E-mail: [email protected]
    More by Chunhua Feng
Cite this: Environ. Sci. Technol. 2020, 54, 14, 9015–9024
Publication Date (Web):May 27, 2020
https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.est.9b07704
Copyright © 2020 American Chemical Society
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Abstract

Inorganic constituents in real wastewater, such as halides and carbonates/bicarbonates, may have negative effects on the performance of electrochemical systems because of their capability of quenching HO. However, we discovered that the presence of Cl and HCO3 in an electrochemical system is conducive to the formation of ClO, which plays an important role in promoting the simultaneous elimination of biorefractory organics and nitrogen in secondary coking wastewater effluent. The 6-h operation of the coupled electrochemical system (an undivided electrolytic cell with a PbO2/Ti anode and a Cu/Zn cathode) at a current density of 37.5 mA cm–2 allowed the removal of 87.8% of chemical oxygen demand (COD) and 86.5% of total nitrogen. The electron paramagnetic resonance results suggested the formation of ClO in the system, and the probe experiments confirmed the predominance of ClO, whose steady-state concentrations (8.08 × 10–13 M) were 16.4, 26.5, and 1609.5 times those of Cl2•– (4.92 × 10–14 M), HO (3.05 × 10–14 M), and Cl (5.02 × 10–16 M), respectively. The rate constant of COD removal and the Faradaic efficiency of anodic oxidation obtained with Cl and HCO3 was linearly proportional to the natural logarithm of the ClO concentration, and the specific energy consumption was inversely correlated to it, demonstrating the crucial role of ClO in pollutant removal.

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  • Additional experimental details: Texts S1–S10, Tables S1–S4, and Figures S1–S14 (PDF)

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