Journal of Applied Electrochemistry

, Volume 34, Issue 5, pp 551–556 | Cite as

Electrochemical Degradation of Nitroaromatic Wastes in Sulfuric Acid Solutions: Part I

  • N.E. Jiménez Jado
  • C. Fernández SánchezEmail author
  • J.R. Ochoa Gómez


This paper describes the development of electrochemical processes for the oxidative degradation of nitroaromatic compounds, including 2-nitrotoluene, 2-nitroaniline and 4-nitroaniline, in acid wastewaters. The electrolysis process results in the formation of a dark solution in which the concentration of nitroaromatics had been reduced to much lower levels and COD removal efficiencies reached 50%. It was found that the best electrolysis conditions were 96% acid strength, 1000 A m−2 current density and ambient temperature. In addition, electrochemical degradations were always more effective when substituents are in the para-position and lead to significant electrophilic character. A black powdery product was isolated from the dark solution; this resulted from the anodic oxidation of amines initially produced at the cathode. The black product was further destroyed by anodic oxidation during prolonged electrolysis.

COD removal efficiency electrochemical oxidation nitroaromatic degradation refractory pollutants wastewater treatment 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    D.H. Blakey, K.L. Maus, R. Bell, J. Bayley, G.R. Douglas and E.R. Nestmann, Mut. Res. 320 (1994) 273.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    J. Xu, T. Jing and P. Lang, Microchem. J. 52 (1995) 188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    J.K. Dunnick, M.R. Elwell and J.R. Bucker, Fundam. Appl. Toxicol. 22(3) (1994) 411.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    H. Song and T.S. Chem, Toxic. Subst. Mech. 14(4) (1995) 307.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    T. Chang and M. Hu, J. Nutr. Biochem. 7(7) (1996) 408.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    J.B. Robertson, J.C. Spain, J.D. Haddock and D.T. Gibson, Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 58(8) (1992) 2643.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    S. Ali-Sadat, K.S. Mohan and S.K. Walia, FEMS Microbiol. Ecol. 17 (1995) 169.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    B.R. Zaidi, S.H. Iman and R.V. Greene, Curr. Microbiol. 33 (1996) 292.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    V. Uberoi and S.K. Bhattacharga, Water Environ. Res. 69(2) (1997) 146.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    P.B. Hatzinger and M. Alexander, Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 16(11) (1997) 2215.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    J.G. Ibañez and G.H. Swain, J. Appl. Electrochem. 24 (1994) 1077.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    R.N. Gedye, Y.N. Sadana, A.C.E. Edmonds and M.L. Langlois, J. Appl. Electrochem. 17 (1986) 731.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    H. Weiguang, L. Fang, G. Feng and G. Zhimei, Wat. Treat. 8 (1993) 335.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    L. Chiang, J. Chang and S. Tseng, Wat. Sci. Tech. 36(2-3) (1997) 123.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    N. Belhadj Tahar and A. Savall, J. Appl. Electrochem. 29 (1999) 277.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    K. Rajeshwar and J. Ibáñez, 'Environmental Electrochemistry. Fundamentals and Applications in Pollution Abatement', (Academic Press, San Diego, CA, 1997).Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    J. Guerra and E. Sevilla, 'Introducción al Análisis Estadístico para Procesos', Second part. (ISPJAE, Sevilla, 1984).Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    J. Rollewicz, CH. Comninellis, E. Plaltner and J. Hiden, Electrochim. Acta 33(4) (1988) 573.Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    A. Mottram, D. Petcher and F.C. Walsh, Chem. Rev. 90 (1990) 837.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Spanish Standard Method UNE-77-004-89. 'Water Quality. Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD). Dicromate Method', CTN Secretary, AENOR (1989).Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    J.Y. Lee and C.Q. Cui, J. Electroanal. Chem. 403 (1996) 109.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    A.Q. Zhang, C.Q. Cui and J.Y. Lee, Synth. Met. 72 (1995) 217.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    R.C. Denney and R. Sinclair, ‘Visible and Ultraviolet Spectro scopy’ (John Wiley & Sons, London, 1987), pp. 143–145.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    A. Boucetta, B. Benali, A. Kadiri, F. Ghailane, C. Cazeau-Dubroca and G. Nouchi, Spectrochim. Acta 50A (1994) 2249.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    D.E. Stilwell and S.M. Park, J. Electrochem. Soc. 135 (1988) 2491.Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    D.E. Stilwell and S.M. Park, J. Electrochem. Soc. 136 (1989) 427.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • N.E. Jiménez Jado
    • 1
  • C. Fernández Sánchez
    • 1
    Email author
  • J.R. Ochoa Gómez
    • 2
  1. 1.Organic Chemistry DepartmentAlcalá UniversityAlcalá de Henares, MadridSpain
  2. 2.Industrial Technology DepartmentAlfonso X UniversityMadridSpain

Personalised recommendations