Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 28, pp 27748–27755 | Cite as

Activated carbon as catalyst for microwave-assisted wet peroxide oxidation of aromatic hydrocarbons

  • Alicia L. Garcia-CostaEmail author
  • Lucia Lopez-Perela
  • Xiyan Xu
  • Juan A. Zazo
  • Juan J. Rodriguez
  • Jose A. Casas
New Challenges in the Application of Advanced Oxidation Processes


This paper addresses the removal of four aromatic hydrocarbons typically found in petrochemical wastewater: benzene (B), toluene (T), o-xylene (X), and naphthalene (N), by microwave-assisted catalytic wet peroxide oxidation (MW-CWPO) using activated carbon (AC) as catalyst. Under the studied conditions, complete pollutant elimination (B, 1.28 mM; T, 1.09 mM; X, 0.94 mM; and N, 0.78 mM) was achieved, with more than 90% TOC removal after only 15-min reaction time, working at 120 °C, pH0 = 3, AC at 1 g L−1, and H2O2 at the stoichiometric dose. Furthermore, in the case of toluene, naphthalene, and xylene, the hydroxylation and breakdown of the ring is very rapid and toxic intermediates were not detected. The process follows two steps: (i) pollutant adsorption onto AC followed by (ii) adsorbed compounds oxidation. Thus, MW-CWPO with AC as catalyst appears a promising way for a fast and effective process for B, T, X, and N removal in aqueous phase.


Microwave CWPO Activated carbon BTXN Mineralization AOP 


Funding information

Authors would like to thank the Spanish Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad (MINECO) for financial support through project CTM2016-76454-R. A.L. Garcia-Costa acknowledges the European Social Fund and MINECO for PhD grant BES-2014-067598.

Supplementary material

11356_2018_2291_MOESM1_ESM.docx (75 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 75 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alicia L. Garcia-Costa
    • 1
    Email author
  • Lucia Lopez-Perela
    • 1
  • Xiyan Xu
    • 1
  • Juan A. Zazo
    • 1
  • Juan J. Rodriguez
    • 1
  • Jose A. Casas
    • 1
  1. 1.Universidad Autonoma de MadridMadridSpain

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