Efficient degradation of drug ibuprofen through catalytic activation of peroxymonosulfate by Fe3C embedded on carbon

Guangli Zhang , Yaobin Ding , Wenshan Nie , Heqing Tang


Received March 09, 2018,Revised , Accepted October 08, 2018, Available online October 13, 2018

Volume 31,2019,Pages 1-12

Ibuprofen (IBU), a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, is becoming an important member of pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) as emerging pollutants. To degrade IBU, magnetic Fe3C nanoparticles embedded on N-doped carbon (Fe3C/NC) were prepared as a catalyst by a sol–gel combustion method. As characterized, the Fe3C/NC nanoparticles were composed of a NC nano-sheet and capsulated Fe3C particles on the sheet. The Fe3C/NC nanoparticles were confirmed an efficient catalyst for peroxymonosulfate (PMS) activation to generate sulfate radicals (SO4•-), single oxygen (1O2) and hydroxyl radicals (•OH) toward the degradation of IBU. The added IBU (10 mg/L) was almost completely removed in 30 min by using 0.1 g/L Fe3C/NC and 2 g/L PMS. The catalyst was confirmed to have good ability and excellent reusability through leaching measurements and cycle experiments. A catalytic mechanism was proposed for the catalytic activation of PMS on Fe3C/NC, which involves both Fe3C reactive sites and N-doped carbon matrix as reactive sites in Fe3C/NC. Moreover, the degradation pathway of IBU in the Fe3C/NC-PMS system was proposed according to the detections of degradation intermediates.

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