Transition Metal Chemistry

, Volume 11, Issue 3, pp 116–117 | Cite as

The kinetics of oxidation of simple aliphatic sulphur compounds by potassium ferrate

  • Ronald L. Bartzatt
  • James Carr


Potassium ferrate (K2FeO4) is highly soluble in water and a very strong oxidizing agent(1, 2). Other properties include a strong bacteriacidal action which has been documented by Murmann and Robinson(1). These characteristics, and others, suggest that potassium ferrate would be useful in the advanced treatment of municipal waste water. The efficiency of oxidation of various organic compounds by potassium ferrate must be investigated before conclusions can be drawn.

When K2FeO4 is placed into aqueous solution a purple colour is produced which disappears as K2FeO4 is reduced. At a spectrophotometric wavelength of 505 nm this affords a convenient method for measuring the decomposition kinetics of K2FeO4.

Rate constants were obtained by algorithmic analysis of spectral absorbance data by the Cornell method(3). This work will present a mechanism of reaction for oxidation of simple aliphatic sulphur compounds by potassium ferrate. The oxidation of simple aliphatic sulphur compounds produces the corresponding sulphoxide or sulphone(4, 5) Compounds studied included dimethyl sulphoxide, diethylsulphide, dimethylsulphone, and 2,2′-thiodiethanol.


Waste Water Dimethyl Algorithmic Analysis Convenient Method Sulphone 
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  1. (1).
    R. K. Murmann, P. R. Robinson,Water Research, 8, 543 (1974).Google Scholar
  2. (2).
    R. L. Bartzatt,The Kinetics of Oxidation of Various Organic Substrates by Potassium Ferrate, Ph.D. Thesis, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Nebraska, 1982.Google Scholar
  3. (3).
    R. G. Cornell,Biometric, 18, 104 (1962).Google Scholar
  4. (4).
    Kenneth Wiberg,Oxidation in Organic Chemistry, Academic Press, 1965.Google Scholar
  5. (5).
    M. Allinger, C. Johnson,Organic Chemistry, Worth Publishers, 1976.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© VCH Verlagsgesellschaft mbH 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ronald L. Bartzatt
    • 1
  • James Carr
    • 2
  1. 1.U.C.S.D. Pediatrics H-814-HLa Jolla
  2. 2.Chemistry DepartmentUniversity of NebraskaLincoln

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