Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 23, Issue 24, pp 24476–24494 | Cite as

Analytical tools employed to determine pharmaceutical compounds in wastewaters after application of advanced oxidation processes

  • Cristina Afonso-Olivares
  • Sarah Montesdeoca-Esponda
  • Zoraida Sosa-Ferrera
  • José Juan Santana-Rodríguez
Global pollution problems, Trends in Detection and Protection

Abstract

Today, the presence of contaminants in the environment is a topic of interest for society in general and for the scientific community in particular. A very large amount of different chemical substances reaches the environment after passing through wastewater treatment plants without being eliminated. This is due to the inefficiency of conventional removal processes and the lack of government regulations. The list of compounds entering treatment plants is gradually becoming longer and more varied because most of these compounds come from pharmaceuticals, hormones or personal care products, which are increasingly used by modern society. As a result of this increase in compound variety, to address these emerging pollutants, the development of new and more efficient removal technologies is needed. Different advanced oxidation processes (AOPs), especially photochemical AOPs, have been proposed as supplements to traditional treatments for the elimination of pollutants, showing significant advantages over the use of conventional methods alone. This work aims to review the analytical methodologies employed for the analysis of pharmaceutical compounds from wastewater in studies in which advanced oxidation processes are applied. Due to the low concentrations of these substances in wastewater, mass spectrometry detectors are usually chosen to meet the low detection limits and identification power required. Specifically, time-of-flight detectors are required to analyse the by-products.

Keywords

Advanced oxidation processes Pharmaceutical compounds Wastewater Sample preparation Determination methods 

Abbreviations

AC

Activated carbon

AOPs

Advanced oxidation processes

API

Atmospheric pressure ionisation

CNF

Carbon nanofiber

E1

Estrone

E2

17-beta-estradiol

EAOPs

Electrochemical AOPs

EDCs

Endocrine disruptor compounds

EE2

17-alpha-ethinylestradiol

ESI

Electrospray ionisation

GC

Gas chromatography

HS

Head space

LC

Liquid chromatography

LLE

Liquid-liquid extraction

LOD

Limit of detection

LOQ

Limit of quantification

MS

Mass spectrometry

MTBSTFA

N-(t-butyldimetylsilyl)-N-methyltrifluoroacetamid

NSAIDs

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

DAD

Diode array detector

POPs

Persistent organic pollutants

PPCPs

Pharmaceutical and personal care products

SBSE

Stir-bar sorptive extraction

SPE

Solid-phase extraction

TAP

Thermally activated persulfate

TOF

Time-of-flight

UHPLC

Ultra-high performance LC

US

Ultrasonic

UV

Ultraviolet

UV-vis

UV-visible

WWTPs

Wastewater treatment plants

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cristina Afonso-Olivares
    • 1
  • Sarah Montesdeoca-Esponda
    • 1
  • Zoraida Sosa-Ferrera
    • 1
  • José Juan Santana-Rodríguez
    • 1
  1. 1.Instituto Universitario de Estudios Ambientales y Recursos Naturales (i-UNAT)Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran CanariaLas Palmas de Gran CanariaSpain

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