Aquatic environment

Degradation behavior of 17αup-ethinylestradiol by ozonation in the synthetic secondary effluent

Zheyun Zhang , Hongtao Zhu , Xianghua Wen , Xiurong Si


Received March 08, 2011,Revised May 12, 2011, Accepted , Available online February 10, 2012

Volume 24,2012,Pages 228-233

Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in the secondary effluent discharged from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) are of great concern in the process of water reuse. Ozonation has been reported as a powerful oxidation technology to eliminate micropollutants in water treatment. Due to the complexity of the wastewater matrix, orthogonal experiments and single factor experiments were conducted to study the influence of operational parameters on the degradation of 17αup-ethinylestradiol (EE2) in the synthetic secondary effluent. The results of the orthogonal experiments indicated that the initial ozone and natural organic matter (NOM) concentration significantly affected EE2 degradation efficiency, which was further validated by the single factor confirmation experiments. EE2 was shown to be effectively degraded by ozonation in the conditions of low pH (6), NOM (10 mg/L), carbonate (50 mg/L), but high suspended solid (20 mg/L) and initial ozone concentration (9 mg/L). The study firstly revealed that the lower pH resulted in higher degradation of EE2 in the synthetic secondary effluent, which differed from EDCs ozonation behavior in pure water. EE2 degradation by ozone molecule instead of hydroxyl radical was proposed to play a key role in the degradation of EDCs by ozonation in the secondary effluent. The ratio between O3 and TOC was identified as an appropriate index to assess the degradation of EE2 by ozonation in the synthetic secondary effluent.

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