Commenced in January 2007
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Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

Search results for: Petruta Oancea

3 TiO2 Solar Light Photocatalysis a Promising Treatment Method of Wastewater with Trinitrotoluene Content

Authors: Ines Nitoi, Petruta Oancea, Lucian Constantin, Laurentiu Dinu, Maria Crisan, Malina Raileanu, Ionut Cristea


2,4,6-Trinitrotoluene (TNT) is the most common pollutant identified in wastewater generated from munitions plants where this explosive is synthesized or handled (munitions load, assembly and pack operations). Due to their toxic and suspected carcinogenic characteristics, nitroaromatic compounds like TNT are included on the list of prioritary pollutants and strictly regulated in EU countries. Since their presence in water bodies is risky for human health and aquatic life, development of powerful, modern treatment methods like photocatalysis are needed in order to assures environmental pollution mitigation. The photocatalytic degradation of TNT was carried out at pH=7.8, in aqueous TiO2 based catalyst suspension, under sunlight irradiation. The enhanced photo activity of catalyst in visible domain was assured by 0.5% Fe doping. TNT degradation experiments were performed using a tubular collector type solar photoreactor (26 UV permeable silica glass tubes series connected), plug in a total recycle loops. The influence of substrate concentration and catalyst dose on the pollutant degradation and mineralization by-products (NO2-, NO3-, NH4+) formation efficiencies was studied. In order to compare the experimental results obtained in various working conditions, the pollutant and mineralization by-products measured concentrations have been considered as functions of irradiation time and cumulative photonic energy Qhν incident on the reactor surface (kJ/L). In the tested experimental conditions, at tens mg/L pollutant concentration, increase of 0,5%-TiO2 dose up to 200mg/L leads to the enhancement of CB degradation efficiency. Since, doubling of TNT content has a negative effect on pollutant degradation efficiency, in similar experimental condition, prolonged irradiation time from 360 to 480 min was necessary in order to assures the compliance of treated effluent with limits imposed by EU legislation (TNT ≤ 10µg/L).

Keywords: wastewater treatment, TNT, photocatalysis, environmental engineering

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2 Relationship between Structure of Some Nitroaromatic Pollutants and Their Degradation Kinetic Parameters in UV-VIS/TIO2 System

Authors: I. Nitoi, P. Oancea, M. Raileanu, M. Crisan, L. Constantin, I. Cristea


Hazardous organic compounds like nitroaromatics are frequently found in chemical and petroleum industries discharged effluents. Due to their bio-refractory character and high chemical stability cannot be efficiently removed by classical biological or physical-chemical treatment processes. In the past decades, semiconductor photocatalysis has been frequently applied for the advanced degradation of toxic pollutants. Among various semiconductors titania was a widely studied photocatalyst, due to its chemical inertness, low cost, photostability and nontoxicity. In order to improve optical absorption and photocatalytic activity of TiO2 many attempts have been made, one feasible approach consists of doping oxide semiconductor with metal. The degradation of dinitrobenzene (DNB) and dinitrotoluene (DNT) from aqueous solution under UVA-VIS irradiation using heavy metal (0.5% Fe, 1%Co, 1%Ni ) doped titania was investigated. The photodegradation experiments were carried out using a Heraeus laboratory scale UV-VIS reactor equipped with a medium-pressure mercury lamp which emits in the range: 320-500 nm. Solutions with (0.34-3.14) x 10-4 M pollutant content were photo-oxidized in the following working conditions: pH = 5-9; photocatalyst dose = 200 mg/L; irradiation time = 30 – 240 minutes. Prior to irradiation, the photocatalyst powder was added to the samples, and solutions were bubbled with air (50 L/hour), in the dark, for 30 min. Dopant type, pH, structure and initial pollutant concentration influence on the degradation efficiency were evaluated in order to set up the optimal working conditions which assure substrate advanced degradation. The kinetics of nitroaromatics degradation and organic nitrogen mineralization was assessed and pseudo-first order rate constants were calculated. Fe doped photocatalyst with lowest metal content (0.5 wt.%) showed a considerable better behaviour in respect to pollutant degradation than Co and Ni (1wt.%) doped titania catalysts. For the same working conditions, degradation efficiency was higher for DNT than DNB in accordance with their calculated adsobance constants (Kad), taking into account that degradation process occurs on catalyst surface following a Langmuir-Hinshalwood model. The presence of methyl group in the structure of DNT allows its degradation by oxidative and reductive pathways, while DNB is converted only by reductive route, which also explain the highest DNT degradation efficiency. For highest pollutant concentration tested (3 x 10-4 M), optimum working conditions (0.5 wt.% Fe doped –TiO2 loading of 200 mg/L, pH=7 and 240 min. irradiation time) assures advanced nitroaromatics degradation (ηDNB=89%, ηDNT=94%) and organic nitrogen mineralization (ηDNB=44%, ηDNT=47%).

Keywords: hazardous organic compounds, irradiation, nitroaromatics, photocatalysis

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1 Biodegradable Cross-Linked Composite Hydrogels Enriched with Small Molecule for Osteochondral Regeneration

Authors: Elena I. Oprita, Oana Craciunescu, Rodica Tatia, Teodora Ciucan, Reka Barabas, Orsolya Raduly, Anca Oancea


Healing of osteochondral defects requires repair of the damaged articular cartilage, the underlying subchondral bone and the interface between these tissues (the functional calcified layer). For this purpose, developing a single monophasic scaffold that can regenerate two specific lineages (cartilage and bone) becomes a challenge. The aim of this work was to develop variants of biodegradable cross-linked composite hydrogel based on natural polypeptides (gelatin), polysaccharides components (chondroitin-4-sulphate and hyaluronic acid), in a ratio of 2:0.08:0.02 (w/w/w) and mixed with Si-hydroxyapatite (Si-Hap), in two ratios of 1:1 and 2:1 (w/w). Si-Hap was synthesized and characterized as a better alternative to conventional Hap. Subsequently, both composite hydrogel variants were cross-linked with (N, N-(3-dimethylaminopropyl)-N-ethyl carbodiimide (EDC) and enriched with a small bioactive molecule (icariin). The small molecule icariin (Ica) (C33H40O15) is the main active constituent (flavonoid) of Herba epimedium used in traditional Chinese medicine to cure bone- and cartilage-related disorders. Ica enhances osteogenic and chondrogenic differentiation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSCs), facilitates matrix calcification and increases the specific extracellular matrix (ECM) components synthesis by chondrocytes. Afterward, the composite hydrogels were characterized for their physicochemical properties in terms of the enzymatic biodegradation in the presence of type I collagenase and trypsin, the swelling capacity and the degree of crosslinking (TNBS assay). The cumulative release of Ica and real-time concentration were quantified at predetermined periods of time, according to the standard curve of standard Ica, after hydrogels incubation in saline buffer at physiological parameters. The obtained cross-linked composite hydrogels enriched with small-molecule Ica were also characterized for morphology by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Their cytocompatibility was evaluated according to EN ISO 10993-5:2009 standard for medical device testing. Thus, analyses regarding cell viability (Live/Dead assay), cell proliferation (Neutral Red assay) and cell adhesion to composite hydrogels (SEM) were performed using NCTC clone L929 cell line. The final results showed that both cross-linked composite hydrogel variants enriched with Ica presented optimal physicochemical, structural and biological properties to be used as a natural scaffold able to repair osteochondral defects. The data did not reveal any toxicity of composite hydrogels in NCTC stabilized cell lines within the tested range of concentrations. Moreover, cells were capable of spreading and proliferating on both composite hydrogel surfaces. In conclusion, the designed biodegradable cross-linked composites enriched with Si and Ica are recommended for further testing as natural temporary scaffolds, which can allow cell migration and synthesis of new extracellular matrix within osteochondral defects.

Keywords: composites, gelatin, osteochondral defect, small molecule

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