Zero-valent iron/persulfate(Fe0/PS) oxidation acetaminophen in water

  • J. Deng
  • Y. Shao
  • N. Gao
  • Y. Deng
  • C. Tan
  • S. Zhou
Original Paper


Zero-valent iron (Fe0), as an alternative iron source, was evaluated to activate persulfate (PS) to degrade acetaminophen (APAP), a representative pharmaceutically active compound in water. Effects of key factors in the so-called Fe0/PS process, including Fe0 dosage, initial pH, temperatures and chelating agents, were studied. Under all the conditions tested, the APAP degradation followed a pseudo-first-order kinetics pattern. The degradation efficiency of APAP was highest when the Fe0 to PS molar ratio increased to 1:1, and the degradation rate constant and removal were 23.19 × 10−3 min−1 and 93.19 %, respectively. Comparing with Fe2+, Fe0 served as an alternative iron source that can gradually release Fe2+ into water, thereby consistently activating PS to produce sulfate radicals. The Fe0/PS system was effective in a broader pH range from 3 to 8.5. Heat could facilitate production of sulfate radicals and enhance the APAP degradation in the Fe0/PS system. High reaction temperature also improved the Fe2+/PS oxidation of APAP. Finally, sodium citrate (a chelating agent) at an appropriate concentration could improve the APAP degradation rate in the Fe2+/PS and Fe0/PS system. The optimal molar ratio of Fe0 to citrate depended on solution pH. Our results demonstrated that Fe0 was an alternative iron source to activate PS to degrade APAP in water.


Affecting factors pH Sodium citrate Sulfate radicals Temperature 



Financial supports from the National Major Project of Science and Technology Ministry of China (2008ZX07421-002) and the research and development Project of Ministry of Housing and Urban–Rural Development (2009-K7-4). We are also thankful to the reviewers for their valuable advice to improve this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Islamic Azad University (IAU) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Deng
    • 1
  • Y. Shao
    • 1
    • 2
  • N. Gao
    • 1
  • Y. Deng
    • 3
  • C. Tan
    • 1
  • S. Zhou
    • 1
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Pollution Control ReuseTongji UniversityShanghaiChina
  2. 2.China Academy of Urban Planning and DesignBeijingChina
  3. 3.Department of Earth and Environmental StudiesMontclair State UniversityMontclairUSA

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