Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 12

Search results for: BTEX

12 BTEX (Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene and Xylene) Degradation by Cold Plasma

Authors: Anelise Leal Vieira Cubas, Marina de Medeiros Machado, Marília de Medeiros Machado

Abstract:

The volatile organic compounds - BTEX (Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene, and Xylene) petroleum derivatives, have high rates of toxicity, which may carry consequences for human health, biota and environment. In this direction, this paper proposes a method of treatment of these compounds by using corona discharge plasma technology. The efficiency of the method was tested by analyzing samples of BTEX after going through a plasma reactor by gas chromatography method. The results show that the optimal residence time of the sample in the reactor was 8 minutes.

Keywords: BTEX, degradation, cold plasma, ecological sciences

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11 Spatial Distribution of Ambient BTEX Concentrations at an International Airport in South Africa

Authors: Raeesa Moolla, Ryan S. Johnson

Abstract:

Air travel, and the use of airports, has experienced proliferative growth in the past few decades, resulting in the concomitant release of air pollutants. Air pollution needs to be monitored because of the known relationship between exposure to air pollutants and increased adverse effects on human health. This study monitored a group of volatile organic compounds (VOCs); specifically BTEX (viz. benzene, toluene, ethyl-benzene and xylenes), as many are detrimental to human health. Through the use of passive sampling methods, the spatial variability of BTEX within an international airport was investigated, in order to determine ‘hotspots’ where occupational exposure to BTEX may be intensified. The passive sampling campaign revealed BTEXtotal concentrations ranged between 12.95–124.04 µg m-3. Furthermore, BTEX concentrations were dispersed heterogeneously within the airport. Due to the slow wind speeds recorded (1.13 m.s-1); the hotspots were located close to their main BTEX sources. The main hotspot was located over the main apron of the airport. Employees working in this area may be chronically exposed to these emissions, which could be potentially detrimental to their health.

Keywords: air pollution, air quality, hotspot monitoring, volatile organic compounds

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10 BTEX Removal from Water: A Comparative Analysis of Efficiency of Low Cost Adsorbents and Granular Activated Carbon

Authors: Juliet Okoli

Abstract:

The removal of BTEX (Benzene, toluene, Ethylbenzene and p-Xylene) from water by orange peel and eggshell compared to GAC were investigated. The influence of various factors such as contact time, dosage and pH on BTEX removal by virgin orange peel and egg shell were accessed using the batch adsorption set-up. These were also compared to that of GAC which serves as a benchmark for this study. Further modification (preparation of Activated carbon) of these virgin low-cost adsorbents was also carried out. The batch adsorption result showed that the optimum contact time, dosage and pH for BTEX removal by virgin LCAs were 180 minutes, 0.5g and 7 and that of GAC was 30mintues, 0.2g and 7. The maximum adsorption capacity for total BTEX showed by orange peel and egg shell were 42mg/g and 59mg/g respectively while that of GAC was 864mg/g. The adsorbent preference for adsorbate were in order of X>E>T>B. A comparison of batch and column set-up showed that the batch set-up was more efficient than the column set-up. The isotherm data for the virgin LCA and GAC prove to fit the Freundlich isotherm better than the Langmuir model, which produced n values >1 in case of GAC and n< 1 in case of virgin LCAs; indicating a more appropriate adsorption of BTEX onto the GAC. The adsorption kinetics for the three studied adsorbents were described well by the pseudo-second order, suggesting chemisorption as the rate limiting step. This was further confirmed by desorption study, as low levels of BTEX (<10%) were recovered from the spent adsorbents especially for GAC (<3%). Further activation of the LCAs which was compared to the virgin LCAs, revealed that the virgin LCAs had minor higher adsorption capacity than the activated LCAs. Economic analysis revealed that the total cost required to clean-up 9,600m3 of BTEX contaminated water using LCA was just 2.8% lesser than GAC, a difference which could be considered negligible. However, this area still requires a more detailed cost-benefit analysis, and if similar conclusions are reached; a low-cost adsorbent, easy to obtain are still promising adsorbents for BTEX removal from aqueous solution; however, the GAC are still more superior to these materials.

Keywords: activated carbon, BTEX removal, low cost adsorbents, water treatment

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9 An Occupational Health Risk Assessment for Exposure to Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene and Xylenes: A Case Study of Informal Traders in a Metro Centre (Taxi Rank) in South Africa

Authors: Makhosazana Dubazana

Abstract:

Many South Africans commuters use minibus taxis daily and are connected to the informal transport network through metro centres informally known as Taxi Ranks. Taxi ranks form part of an economic nexus for many informal traders, connecting them to commuters, their prime clientele. They work along designated areas along the periphery of the taxi rank and in between taxi lanes. Informal traders are therefore at risk of adverse health effects associated with the inhalation of exhaust fumes from minibus taxis. Of the exhaust emissions, benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene and xylenes (BTEX) have high toxicity. Purpose: The purpose of this study was to conduct a Human Health Risk Assessment for informal traders, looking at their exposure to BTEX compounds. Methods: The study was conducted in a subsection of a taxi rank which is representative of the entire taxi rank. This subsection has a daily average of 400 minibus taxi moving through it and an average of 60 informal traders working in it. In the health risk assessment, a questionnaire was conducted to understand the occupational behaviour of the informal traders. This was used to deduce the exposure scenarios and sampling locations. Three sampling campaigns were run for an average of 10 hours each covering the average working hours of traders. A gas chronographer was used for collecting continues ambient air samples at 15 min intervals. Results: Over the three sampling days, the average concentrations were, 8.46ppb, 0.63 ppb, 1.27ppb and 1.0ppb for benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene respectively. The average cancer risk is 9.46E-03. In several cases, they were incidences of unacceptable risk for the cumulative exposure of all four BTEX compounds. Conclusion: This study adds to the body of knowledge on the Human Health Risk effects of urban BTEX pollution, furthermore focusing on the impact of urban BTEX on high risk personal such as informal traders, in Southern Africa.

Keywords: human health risk assessment, informal traders, occupational risk, urban BTEX

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8 Control of Airborne Aromatic Hydrocarbons over TiO2-Carbon Nanotube Composites

Authors: Joon Y. Lee, Seung H. Shin, Ho H. Chun, Wan K. Jo

Abstract:

Poly vinyl acetate (PVA)-based titania (TiO2)–carbon nanotube composite nanofibers (PVA-TCCNs) with various PVA-to-solvent ratios and PVA-based TiO2 composite nanofibers (PVA-TN) were synthesized using an electrospinning process, followed by thermal treatment. The photocatalytic activities of these nanofibers in the degradation of airborne monocyclic aromatics under visible-light irradiation were examined. This study focuses on the application of these photocatalysts to the degradation of the target compounds at sub-part-per-million indoor air concentrations. The characteristics of the photocatalysts were examined using scanning electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction, ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy, and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. For all the target compounds, the PVA-TCCNs showed photocatalytic degradation efficiencies superior to those of the reference PVA-TN. Specifically, the average photocatalytic degradation efficiencies for benzene, toluene, ethyl benzene, and o-xylene (BTEX) obtained using the PVA-TCCNs with a PVA-to-solvent ratio of 0.3 (PVA-TCCN-0.3) were 11%, 59%, 89%, and 92%, respectively, whereas those observed using PVA-TNs were 5%, 9%, 28%, and 32%, respectively. PVA-TCCN-0.3 displayed the highest photocatalytic degradation efficiency for BTEX, suggesting the presence of an optimal PVA-to-solvent ratio for the synthesis of PVA-TCCNs. The average photocatalytic efficiencies for BTEX decreased from 11% to 4%, 59% to 18%, 89% to 37%, and 92% to 53%, respectively, when the flow rate was increased from 1.0 to 4.0 L min1. In addition, the average photocatalytic efficiencies for BTEX increased 11% to ~0%, 59% to 3%, 89% to 7%, and 92% to 13% , respectively, when the input concentration increased from 0.1 to 1.0 ppm. The prepared PVA-TCCNs were effective for the purification of airborne aromatics at indoor concentration levels, particularly when the operating conditions were optimized.

Keywords: mixing ratio, nanofiber, polymer, reference photocatalyst

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7 Permeable Reactive Pavement for Controlling the Transport of Benzene, Toluene, Ethyl-Benzene, and Xylene (BTEX) Contaminants

Authors: Shengyi Huang, Chenju Liang

Abstract:

Volatile organic compounds such as benzene, toluene, ethyl-benzene, and xylene (BTEX) are common contaminants in environment, which could come from asphalt concrete or exhaust emissions of vehicles. The BTEX may invade to the subsurface environment via wet and dry atmospheric depositions. If there aren’t available ways for controlling contaminants’ fate and transport, they would extensively harm natural environment. In the 1st phase of this study, various adsorbents were screened for a suitable one to be an additive in the porous asphalt mixture. In the 2nd phase, addition of the selected adsorbent was incorporated with the design of porous asphalt concrete (PAC) to produce the permeable reactive pavement (PRP), which was subsequently tested for the potential of adsorbing aqueous BTEX as compared to the PAC, in the 3rd phase. The PRP was prepared according to the following steps: firstly, the suitable adsorbent was chosen based on the analytical results of specific surface area analysis, thermal-gravimetric analysis, adsorption kinetics and isotherms, and thermal dynamics analysis; secondly, the materials of coarse aggregate, fine aggregate, filler, asphalt, and fiber were tested in order to meet regulated specifications (e.g., water adsorption, soundness, viscosity etc.) for preparing the PRP; thirdly, the amount of adsorbent additive was determined in the PRP; fourthly, the prepared PAC and PRP were examined for their physical properties (e.g., abrasion loss, drain-down loss, Marshall stability, Marshall flow, dynamic stability etc.). As a result of comparison between PRP and PAC, the PRP showed better physical performance than the traditional PAC. At last, the Marshall Specimen column tests were conducted to explore the adsorption capacities of PAC and PRPs. The BTEX adsorption capacities of PRPs are higher than those obtained from traditional PAC. In summary, PRPs showed superior physical performance and adsorption capacities, which exhibit the potential of PRP to be applied as a replacement of PAC for better controlling the transport of non-point source pollutants.

Keywords: porous asphalt concrete, volatile organic compounds, permeable reactive pavement, non-point source pollution

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6 Multi-Criteria Optimal Management Strategy for in-situ Bioremediation of LNAPL Contaminated Aquifer Using Particle Swarm Optimization

Authors: Deepak Kumar, Jahangeer, Brijesh Kumar Yadav, Shashi Mathur

Abstract:

In-situ remediation is a technique which can remediate either surface or groundwater at the site of contamination. In the present study, simulation optimization approach has been used to develop management strategy for remediating LNAPL (Light Non-Aqueous Phase Liquid) contaminated aquifers. Benzene, toluene, ethyl benzene and xylene are the main component of LNAPL contaminant. Collectively, these contaminants are known as BTEX. In in-situ bioremediation process, a set of injection and extraction wells are installed. Injection wells supply oxygen and other nutrient which convert BTEX into carbon dioxide and water with the help of indigenous soil bacteria. On the other hand, extraction wells check the movement of plume along downstream. In this study, optimal design of the system has been done using PSO (Particle Swarm Optimization) algorithm. A comprehensive management strategy for pumping of injection and extraction wells has been done to attain a maximum allowable concentration of 5 ppm and 4.5 ppm. The management strategy comprises determination of pumping rates, the total pumping volume and the total running cost incurred for each potential injection and extraction well. The results indicate a high pumping rate for injection wells during the initial management period since it facilitates the availability of oxygen and other nutrients necessary for biodegradation, however it is low during the third year on account of sufficient oxygen availability. This is because the contaminant is assumed to have biodegraded by the end of the third year when the concentration drops to a permissible level.

Keywords: groundwater, in-situ bioremediation, light non-aqueous phase liquid, BTEX, particle swarm optimization

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5 Toxicological Validation during the Development of New Catalytic Systems Using Air/Liquid Interface Cell Exposure

Authors: M. Al Zallouha, Y. Landkocz, J. Brunet, R. Cousin, J. M. Halket, E. Genty, P. J. Martin, A. Verdin, D. Courcot, S. Siffert, P. Shirali, S. Billet

Abstract:

Toluene is one of the most used Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) in the industry. Amongst VOCs, Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene and Xylenes (BTEX) emitted into the atmosphere have a major and direct impact on human health. It is, therefore, necessary to minimize emissions directly at source. Catalytic oxidation is an industrial technique which provides remediation efficiency in the treatment of these organic compounds. However, during operation, the catalysts can release some compounds, called byproducts, more toxic than the original VOCs. The catalytic oxidation of a gas stream containing 1000ppm of toluene on Pd/α-Al2O3 can release a few ppm of benzene, according to the operating temperature of the catalyst. The development of new catalysts must, therefore, include chemical and toxicological validation phases. In this project, A549 human lung cells were exposed in air/liquid interface (Vitrocell®) to gas mixtures derived from the oxidation of toluene with a catalyst of Pd/α-Al2O3. Both exposure concentrations (i.e. 10 and 100% of catalytic emission) resulted in increased gene expression of Xenobiotics Metabolising Enzymes (XME) (CYP2E1 CYP2S1, CYP1A1, CYP1B1, EPHX1, and NQO1). Some of these XMEs are known to be induced by polycyclic organic compounds conventionally not searched during the development of catalysts for VOCs degradation. The increase in gene expression suggests the presence of undetected compounds whose toxicity must be assessed before the adoption of new catalyst. This enhances the relevance of toxicological validation of such systems before scaling-up and marketing.

Keywords: BTEX toxicity, air/liquid interface cell exposure, Vitrocell®, catalytic oxidation

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4 The Spatial and Temporal Distribution of Ambient Benzene, Toluene, Ethylbenzene and Xylene Concentrations at an International Airport in South Africa

Authors: Ryan S. Johnson, Raeesa Moolla

Abstract:

Airports are known air pollution hotspots due to the variety of fuel driven activities that take place within the confines of them. As such, people working within airports are particularly vulnerable to exposure of hazardous air pollutants, including hundreds of aromatic hydrocarbons, and more specifically a group of compounds known as BTEX (viz. benzene, toluene, ethyl-benzene and xylenes). These compounds have been identified as being harmful to human and environmental health. Through the use of passive and active sampling methods, the spatial and temporal variability of benzene, toluene, ethyl-benzene and xylene concentrations within the international airport was investigated. Two sampling campaigns were conducted. In order to quantify the temporal variability of concentrations within the airport, an active sampling strategy using the Synspec Spectras Gas Chromatography 955 instrument was used. Furthermore, a passive sampling campaign, using Radiello Passive Samplers was used to quantify the spatial variability of these compounds. In addition, meteorological factors are known to affect the dispersal and dilution of pollution. Thus a Davis Pro-Weather 2 station was utilised in order to measure in situ weather parameters (viz. wind speed, wind direction and temperature). Results indicated that toluene varied on a daily, temporal scale considerably more than other concentrations. Toluene further exhibited a strong correlation with regards to the meteorological parameters, inferring that toluene was affected by these parameters to a greater degree than the other pollutants. The passive sampling campaign revealed BTEXtotal concentrations ranged between 12.95 – 124.04 µg m-3. From the results obtained it is clear that benzene, toluene, ethyl-benzene and xylene concentrations are heterogeneously spatially dispersed within the airport. Due to the slow wind speeds recorded over the passive sampling campaign (1.13 m s-1.), the hotspots were located close to the main concentration sources. The most significant hotspot was located over the main apron of the airport. It is recommended that further, extensive investigations into the seasonality of hazardous air pollutants at the airport is necessary in order for sound conclusions to be made about the temporal and spatial distribution of benzene, toluene, ethyl-benzene and xylene concentrations within the airport.

Keywords: airport, air pollution hotspot, BTEX concentrations, meteorology

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3 Delineation of Oil – Polluted Sites in Ibeno LGA, Nigeria, Using Microbiological and Physicochemical Characterization

Authors: Ime R. Udotong, Justina I. R. Udotong, Ofonime U. M. John

Abstract:

Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPNU), a subsidiary of ExxonMobil and the highest crude oil & condensate producer in Nigeria has its operational base and an oil terminal, the Qua Iboe terminal (QIT) located at Ibeno, Nigeria. Other oil companies like Network Exploration and Production Nigeria Ltd, Frontier Oil Ltd; Shell Petroleum Development Company Ltd; Elf Petroleum Nigeria Ltd and Nigerian Agip Energy, a subsidiary of the Italian ENI E&P operate onshore, on the continental shelf and in deep offshore of the Atlantic Ocean, respectively with the coastal waters of Ibeno, Nigeria as the nearest shoreline. This study was designed to delineate the oil-polluted sites in Ibeno, Nigeria using microbiological and physico-chemical characterization of soils, sediments and ground and surface water samples from the study area. Results obtained revealed that there have been significant recent hydrocarbon inputs into this environment as observed from the high counts of hydrocarbonoclastic microorganisms in excess of 1% at all the stations sampled. Moreover, high concentrations of THC, BTEX and heavy metals contents in all the samples analyzed corroborate the high recent crude oil input into the study area. The results also showed that the pollution of the different environmental media sampled were of varying degrees, following the trend: Ground water > surface water > sediments > soils.

Keywords: microbiological characterization, oil-polluted sites, physico-chemical analyses, total hydrocarbon content

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2 Delineation of Oil– Polluted Sites in Ibeno LGA, Nigeria

Authors: Ime R. Udotong, Ofonime U. M. John, Justina I. R. Udotong

Abstract:

Ibeno, Nigeria hosts the operational base of Mobil Producing Nigeria Unlimited (MPNU), a subsidiary of ExxonMobil and the current highest oil and condensate producer in Nigeria. Besides MPNU, other multinational oil companies like Shell Petroleum Development Company Ltd, Elf Petroleum Nigeria Ltd and Nigerian Agip Energy, a subsidiary of ENI E&P operate onshore, on the continental shelf and deep offshore of the Atlantic Ocean in Ibeno, Nigeria, respectively. This study was designed to carry out the survey of the oil impacted sites in Ibeno, Nigeria. A combinations of electrical resistivity (ER), ground penetrating radar (GPR) and physico-chemical as well as microbiological characterization of soils and water samples from the area were carried out. Results obtained revealed that there have been hydrocarbon contaminations of this environment by past crude oil spills as observed from significant concentrations of THC, BTEX and heavy metal contents in the environment. Also, high resistivity values and GPR profiles clearly showing the distribution, thickness and lateral extent of hydrocarbon contamination as represented on the radargram reflector tones corroborates previous significant oil input. Contaminations were of varying degrees, ranging from slight to high, indicating levels of substantial attenuation of crude oil contamination over time. Hydrocarbon pollution of the study area was confirmed by the results of soil and water physico-chemical and microbiological analysis. The levels of THC contamination observed in this study are indicative of high levels of crude oil contamination. Moreover, the display of relatively lower resistivities of locations outside the impacted areas compared to resistivity values within the impacted areas, the 3-D Cartesian images of oil contaminant plume depicted by red, light brown and magenta for high, low and very low oil impacted areas, respectively as well as the high counts of hydrocarbonoclastic microorganisms in excess of 1% confirmed significant recent pollution of the study area.

Keywords: oil-polluted sites, physico-chemical analyses, microbiological characterization, geotechnical investigations, total hydrocarbon content

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1 Application of Nanoparticles on Surface of Commercial Carbon-Based Adsorbent for Removal of Contaminants from Water

Authors: Ahmad Kayvani Fard, Gordon Mckay, Muataz Hussien

Abstract:

Adsorption/sorption is believed to be one of the optimal processes for the removal of heavy metals from water due to its low operational and capital cost as well as its high removal efficiency. Different materials have been reported in literature as adsorbent for heavy metal removal in waste water such as natural sorbents, organic polymers (synthetic) and mineral materials (inorganic). The selection of adsorbents and development of new functional materials that can achieve good removal of heavy metals from water is an important practice and depends on many factors, such as the availability of the material, cost of material, and material safety and etc. In this study we reported the synthesis of doped Activated carbon and Carbon nanotube (CNT) with different loading of metal oxide nanoparticles such as Fe2O3, Fe3O4, Al2O3, TiO2, SiO2 and Ag nanoparticles and their application in removal of heavy metals, hydrocarbon, and organics from waste water. Commercial AC and CNT with different loadings of mentioned nanoparticle were prepared and effect of pH, adsorbent dosage, sorption kinetic, and concentration effects are studied and optimum condition for removal of heavy metals from water is reported. The prepared composite sorbent is characterized using field emission scanning electron microscopy (FE-SEM), high transmission electron microscopy (HR-TEM), thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), X-ray diffractometer (XRD), the Brunauer, Emmett and Teller (BET) nitrogen adsorption technique, and Zeta potential. The composite materials showed higher removal efficiency and superior adsorption capacity compared to commercially available carbon based adsorbent. The specific surface area of AC increased by 50% reaching up to 2000 m2/g while the CNT specific surface area of CNT increased by more than 8 times reaching value of 890 m2/g. The increased surface area is one of the key parameters along with surface charge of the material determining the removal efficiency and removal efficiency. Moreover, the surface charge density of the impregnated CNT and AC have enhanced significantly where can benefit the adsorption process. The nanoparticles also enhance the catalytic activity of material and reduce the agglomeration and aggregation of material which provides more active site for adsorbing the contaminant from water. Some of the results for treating wastewater includes 100% removal of BTEX, arsenic, strontium, barium, phenolic compounds, and oil from water. The results obtained are promising for the use of AC and CNT loaded with metal oxide nanoparticle in treatment and pretreatment of waste water and produced water before desalination process. Adsorption can be very efficient with low energy consumption and economic feasibility.

Keywords: carbon nanotube, activated carbon, adsorption, heavy metal, water treatment

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