Humic Acid Degradation by ZnO Photocatalyst
School of Biochemical Engineering and Technology, Sirindhorn International Institute of Technology (SIIT), Thammasat University, Thailand
Humic acid (HA) is universally present in soils and natural water resources in a yellow-brown form. HA can react with chlorine during drinking water treatment and produce disinfection byproducts (DBPs), such as trihalomethanes (THMs) and haloacetic acids (HAAs), which are harmful for health. Therefore, HA has to be eliminated from water environment. The photocatalysis is an effective alternative solution for the degradation of HA in a water environment. This research aims to degrade HA from water environment. The rapid degradation of HA, using zinc oxide nanoparticles, irradiated by ultraviolet light (ZnO/UV), is investigated. The optimum conditions of pertinent factors, which include the light wavelength (UV-A and UV-C), and light intensity, HA concentration, ZnO dose, and contact time are investigated at neutral pH conditions, considered for drinking water treatment. HA degradation efficiency reached more than 80% after 60 min for both types of irradiation in optimum conditions of 0.3 g/L ZnO dose in 180 min of contact time. Comparisons for degradation efficiency under UV-A and UV-C irradiation indicate that UV-C has higher efficiency, up to 150 min of contact time. The reusability of catalyst is performed for three reuses and still revealed effective for beneficial commercial applications.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2016
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