Synthesis of coal fly ash zeolite for the catalytic wet peroxide oxidation of Orange II

Abstract

Fly ash, a coal combustion residue produced by Termotasajero in Colombia, has been hydrothermally treated after an alkaline fusion to produce zeolite without addition of silicon or aluminum. The starting material was thoroughly mixed with NaOH, in a 1:1.2 mass ratio, to obtain a homogeneous mixture that was heated to 100 °C during different times (6, 8, and 10 h) and three zeolite samples were produced. The samples were characterized by XRD, SEM, XRF, Mössbauer spectroscopy, and N2 physisorption. According to characterization results (high surface area and appropriate morphological properties including crystallinity) and synthesis time, zeolitic catalyst synthesized with 8 h of hydrothermal treatment was selected to perform further analysis. This sample consisted of a mixture of zeolite X and zeolite A of high surface area (301 m2 g−1) and a Fe content of 6% wt/wt. The zeolite was used as a catalyst for the Fenton oxidation of Orange II. Experiments were performed in a laboratory batch reactor at 70 °C and constant pH = 3, using different concentrations of H2O2. When the stoichiometric amount of H2O2 was used, good mineralization (XTOC = 45%), complete discoloration, and oxidant consumption were obtained after 240 min of reaction. The sample retained activity after 16 h of usage. The presence of Fe in the reaction media was always detected and a homogeneous Fenton mechanism induced by surface-leached iron is suggested.

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Acknowledgments

The Argentinian authors want to express their gratitude to Ms. Carmen Rodriguez for the execution of experiments.

Funding

This study received financial support from CONICET (Argentina) and AUIP (Spain).

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Correspondence to Herney Ramírez.

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Responsible editor: Vítor Pais Vilar

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Ramírez, H., Núñez, M.M.G., Bogoya, A.B. et al. Synthesis of coal fly ash zeolite for the catalytic wet peroxide oxidation of Orange II. Environ Sci Pollut Res 26, 4277–4287 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-018-3315-1

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Keywords

  • Fly ash
  • Zeolite
  • Geo-catalyst
  • Fenton reaction
  • Orange II
  • Mineralization
  • Discoloration