Aquatic environment

Electrochemical oxidation of recalcitrant organic compounds in biologically treated municipal solid waste leachate in a flow reactor

Xuejun Quan , Zhiliang Cheng , Bo Chen , Xincai Zhu


Received December 04, 2012,Revised March 04, 2013, Accepted , Available online October 10, 2013

Volume ,2013,Pages 2023-2030

Biologically-treated municipal solid waste (MSW) leachate still contains many kinds of bio-recalcitrant organic matter. A new plate and frame electrochemical reactor was designed to treat these materials under flow conditions. In the electrochemical oxidation process, NH3 and color could be easily removed by means of electro-generated chlorine/hypochlorite within 20 min. The effects of major process parameters on the removal of organic pollutants were investigated systematically. Under experimental conditions, the optimum operation parameters were current density of 65 mA/cm2, flow velocity of 2.6 cm/sec in electrode gap, and initial chloride ion concentration of 5000 mg/L. The COD in the leachate could be reduced below 100 mg/L after 1 hr of treatment. The kinetics and mechanism of COD removal were investigated by simultaneously monitoring the COD change and chlorine/hypochlorite production. The kinetics of COD removal exhibited a two-stage kinetic model, and the decrease of electro-generated chlorine/hypochlorite production was the major mechanism for the slowing down of the COD removal rate in the second stage. The narrowing of the electrode gap is beneficial for COD removal and energy consumption.

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