Effect of Process Parameters on the Photocatalytic Degradation of Phenol in Oilfield Produced Wastewater using ZnO/Fe2O3 Nanocomposites.

Omer Al Haiqi  -  Faculty of Chemical and Process Engineering Technology, College of Engineering Technology, Universiti Malaysia Pahang, Malaysia
Abdurahman Hamid Nour  -  Faculty of Chemical and Process Engineering Technology, College of Engineering Technology, Universiti Malaysia Pahang, Malaysia
Rushdi Bargaa  -  Faculty of Chemical and Process Engineering Technology, College of Engineering Technology, Universiti Malaysia Pahang, Malaysia
*Bamidele Victor Ayodele  -  Institute of Energy Policy and Research, Universiti Tenaga Nasional, Malaysia
Received: 8 Oct 2019; Revised: 5 Nov 2019; Accepted: 5 Nov 2019; Published: 1 Apr 2020; Available online: 28 Feb 2020.
Open Access Copyright (c) 2020 Bulletin of Chemical Reaction Engineering & Catalysis
License URL: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0

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The upstream processing of crude oil is often associated with the presence of phenolic compounds when not properly treated could result in adverse effects on human health. The objective of the study was to investigate the effect of process parameters on the photocatalytic degradation of phenol. The ZnO/Fe2O3 nanocomposite photocatalyst was prepared by sol-gel method and characterized using various instrument techniques. The characterized ZnO/Fe2O3 nanocomposite displayed suitable physicochemical properties for the photocatalytic reaction. The ZnO/Fe2O3 nanocomposite was employed for the phenol degradation in a cylindrical batch reactor under solar radiation. The photocatalytic runs show that calcination temperature of the ZnO/Fe2O3 nanocomposite, catalyst loading, initial phenol concentration and pH of the wastewater significantly influence the photocatalytic degradation of phenol. After 180 min of solar radiation, the highest phenol degradation of 92.7% was obtained using the ZnO/Fe2O3 photocatalyst calcined at 400 ºC. This study has demonstrated that phenol degradation is significantly influenced by parameters such as calcination temperature of the ZnO/Fe2O3 nanocomposite, catalyst loading, initial phenol concentration and pH of the wastewater resulting in highest phenol degradation using the ZnO/Fe2O3 nanocomposite calcined at 400 ºC, initial phenol concentration of 0.5 mg/L, catalyst loading of 3 mg/L and pH of 3. Copyright © 2020 BCREC Group. All rights reserved

Keywords: Degradation; Photocatalyst; Phenol; Wastewater; ZnO/Fe2O3 nanocomposites

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