Adsorption-photocatalytic processes for removal of pentachlorophenol contaminant using FeNi(3)/SiO(2)/ZnO magnetic nanocomposite under simulated solar light irradiation.


Arghavan FS(1), Hossein Panahi A(2), Nasseh N(3), Ghadirian M(4).
Author information:
(1)Student Research Committee, Department of Environmental Health Engineering, Faculty of Health, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.
(2)Social Determinants of Health Research Center, Birjand University of Medical Sciences, Birjand, Iran.
(3)Social Determinants of Health Research Center, Faculty of Health, Environmental Health Engineering Department, Birjand University of Medical Sciences, Birjand, Iran. [Email]
(4)Research assistant at university of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.


The adsorption followed by photocatalytic degradation process was examined for the pentachlorophenol (PCP) removal from aqueous solution. These processes were accomplished by using FeNi3/SiO2/ZnO magnetic nanocomposite as an adsorbent-photocatalytic agent and under the irradiation of solar light. The magnetic nanocomposite used was first synthesized and then was characterized using transmission electron microscopy (TEM), field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), vibrating-sample magnetometer (VSM), and X-ray diffraction (XRD) spectroscopy. The PCP removal efficiency was tested for various factors, including pH, PCP concentration, and nanocomposite dose at different contact times. The characterization results of TEM, FE-SEM, and VSM analysis showed that the synthesized nanoparticles are amorphous and tend to agglomerate due to their high super-paramagnetic property. In addition, the EDX technique showed that the Zn and O elements had the highest weight percent in the synthesized nanocomposite, respectively. On the other hand, XRD analysis revealed that the crystalline size of the nanoparticles was about 42 nm. The kinetic of PCP degradation followed the pseudo-first-order model with R2 = 0.978. According to the results of the isotherm study, the adsorption of PCP onto the nanoparticles followed the Freundlich model. The results of adsorption-photocatalytic degradation experiments showed that 100% removal of PCP was obtained at optimum conditions of pH = 3, nanocomposite dose = 0.5 g/L, contact time = 180 min, and initial PCP concentration of 10 mg/L. Through the results obtained from this study, the adsorption process followed by solar light photocatalytic degradation process using FeNi3/SiO2/ZnO magnetic nanocomposite is found to be an efficacious treatment method for the removal of PCP contaminant from water and wastewater.