Displaying publications 1 - 20 of 24 in total

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  1. Oh WD, Lim PE, Seng CE, Sujari AN
    Bioresour Technol, 2012 Jun;114:179-87.
    PMID: 22503192 DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2012.03.065
    A kinetic model incorporating adsorption, desorption and biodegradation processes was developed to describe the bioregeneration of granular activated carbon (GAC) loaded with 4-chlorophenol (4-CP) and 2,4-dichlorophenol (2,4-DCP), respectively, in simultaneous adsorption and biodegradation processes. The model was numerically solved and the results showed that the kinetic model was well-fitted (R(2)>0.83) to the experimental data at different GAC dosages and at various initial 4-CP and 2,4-DCP concentrations. The rate of bioregeneration in simultaneous adsorption and biodegradation processes was influenced by the ratio of initial chlorophenol concentration to GAC dosage. Enhancement in the rate of bioregeneration was achieved by using the lowest ratio under either one of the following experimental conditions: (1) increasing initial chlorophenol concentration at constant GAC dosage and (2) increasing GAC dosage at constant initial chlorophenol concentration. It was found that the rate enhancement was more pronounced under the second experimental condition.
  2. Oh WD, Lim PE, Seng CE, Sujari AN
    Bioresour Technol, 2011 Oct;102(20):9497-502.
    PMID: 21871793 DOI: 10.1016/j.biortech.2011.07.107
    The objectives of this study are to obtain the time courses of the amount of chlorophenol adsorbed onto granular activated carbon (GAC) in the simultaneous adsorption and biodegradation processes involving 4-chlorophenol (4-CP) and 2,4-dichlorophenol (2,4-DCP), respectively, and to quantify the bioregeneration efficiency of GAC loaded with 4-CP and 2,4-DCP by direct measurement of the amount of chlorophenol adsorbed onto GAC. Under abiotic and biotic conditions, the time courses of the amount of chlorophenol adsorbed onto GAC at various GAC dosages for the initial 4-CP and 2,4-DCP concentrations below and above the biomass acclimated concentrations of 300 and 150 mg/L, respectively, were determined. The results show that the highest bioregeneration efficiency was achieved provided that the initial adsorbate concentration was lower than the acclimated concentration. When the initial adsorbate concentration was higher than the acclimated concentration, the highest bioregeneration efficiency was achieved if excess adsorbent was used.
  3. Saheed IO, Oh WD, Suah FBM
    J Hazard Mater, 2021 04 15;408:124889.
    PMID: 33418525 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2020.124889
    In recent times, research interest into the development of biodegradable, cost-effective and environmental friendly adsorbents with favourable properties for adsorption of pollutants is a challenge. Modification of chitosan via different physical and chemical methods have gained attention as a promising approach for removing organic (such as dyes and pharmaceuticals) and inorganic (such as metal/metal ions) pollutants from aqueous medium. In this regard, researchers have reported grafting and cross-linking approach among others as a potentially useful method for chitosan's modification for improved adsorption efficiency with respect to pollutant uptake. This article reviews the trend in chitosan modification, with regards to the summary of some recently published works on modification of chitosan and their adsorption application in pollutants (metal ion, dyes and pharmaceuticals) removal from aqueous medium. The review uniquely highlights some common cross-linkers and grafting procedures for chitosan modification, their influence on structure and adsorption capacity of modified-chitosan with respect to pollutants removal. Findings revealed that the performance of modified chitosan for adsorption of pollutants depends largely on the modification method adopted, materials used for the modification and adsorption experimental conditions. Cross-linking is commonly utilized for improving the chemical and mechanical stabilities of chitosan but usually decreases adsorption capacity of chitosan/modified-chitosan for adsorption of pollutants. However, literature survey revealed that adsorption capacity of cross-linked chitosan based materials have been enhanced in recently published works either by grafting, incorporation of solid adsorbents (e.g metals, clays and activated carbon) or combination of both prior to cross-linking.
  4. Wagner M, Andrew Lin KY, Oh WD, Lisak G
    J Hazard Mater, 2021 07 05;413:125325.
    PMID: 33601143 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.125325
    The global population growth demands intensification of anthropogenic processes, thus leading to inter alia pollution of both land and aquatic environments with toxic organic compounds. Particularly harmful synthetic compounds are classified as persistent organic pollutants (POPs). Their relatively high chemical resistance resulted in a worldwide ban or strict control on the use of POPs. The majority of POPs were commonly used as pesticides, and unfortunately, some of them are still utilized as an aid in agricultural practices. Therefore, environmental monitoring in terms of reliable detection and quantification of pesticidal POPs is an ever-increasing need. Chemical sensors and adsorption materials crafted for specific pesticide operate on host-guest interactions should provide selectivity and sensitivity, thus leading to the detection of target molecule down to the nanomolar range. This could be achieved with materials exhibiting a very large active surface area, well-defined structure, and high stability. The novel materials studied in that context are metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). The structure of various MOFs can be functionalized to provide desired host-guest interactions. In this mini-review, we critically discuss the application of MOFs for the detection and adsorption of selected pesticides that are classified as POPs according to the Stockholm Convention.
  5. Saheed IO, Oh WD, Suah FBM
    Int J Biol Macromol, 2021 Jul 31;183:1026-1033.
    PMID: 33971228 DOI: 10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2021.05.042
    In this study, chitosan/porous carbon composite (C-PC) modified in 1-Allyl-3-methyl imidazolium bromide [AMIM][Br] under airtight condition was prepared for the removal of Acid Blue-25 dye (AB-25) from aqueous medium. For comparison of adsorption efficiency of C-PC, chitosan-activated carbon composite (C-AC) was also prepared in 1% acetic acid. The adsorbents were characterised using SEM, EDX, XRD, BET, TGA and FTIR. The micrograph of C-PC revealed cavities and slightly rough surfaces dominated with similar sized and irregular shaped stone-like materials which differ from the precursors' micrograph. BET analysis revealed the domination of mesopores on the C-PC and C-AC surfaces, as the hydroxyl and amino group on C-PC are the main active sites for AB-25 dye uptake. The dye was better adsorbed onto C-PC at pH 2 and C-AC at pH 4. The adsorption capacity obtained for C-PC, C-AC, activated carbon (AC) and chitosan (CH) using Langmuir isotherm model are 3333.33 mg/g, 909.90 mg/g, 909.09 mg/g and 833.33 mg/g, respectively. The experimental data are well described by Langmuir and Fruendlich isotherms for adsorption of the dye onto C-PC, AC and CH. C-AC fitted into Langmuir isotherm only. The kinetics of the adsorption fitted into pseudo-second order indicating the possibility of chemical interactions in the adsorption process.
  6. Sani S, Adnan R, Oh WD, Iqbal A
    Nanomaterials (Basel), 2021 Oct 16;11(10).
    PMID: 34685183 DOI: 10.3390/nano11102742
    The influence of variable reaction time (tr) on surface/textural properties (surface area, total pore volume, and pore diameter) of carbon-encapsulated magnetite (Fe3O4@C) nanocomposites fabricated by a hydrothermal process at 190 °C for 3, 4, and 5 h was studied. The properties were calculated using the Brunauer-Emmett-Teller (BET) isotherms data. The nanocomposites were characterised using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction analysis, thermogravimetry, and scanning and transmission electron microscopies. Analysis of variance shows tr has the largest effect on pore volume (F value = 1117.6, p value < 0.0001), followed by the surface area (F value = 54.8, p value < 0.0001) and pore diameter (F value = 10.4, p value < 0.001) with R2-adjusted values of 99.5%, 88.5% and 63.1%, respectively. Tukey and Fisher tests confirmed tr rise to have caused increased variations in mean particle sizes (11-91 nm), crystallite sizes (5-21 nm), pore diameters (9-16 nm), pore volume (0.017-0.089 cm3 g-1) and surface area (7.6-22.4 m2 g-1) of the nanocomposites with individual and simultaneous confidence limits of 97.9 and 84.4 (p-adj < 0.05). The nanocomposites' retained Fe-O vibrations at octahedral (436 cm-1) and tetrahedral (570 cm-1) cubic ferrite sites, modest thermal stability (37-60 % weight loss), and large volume-specific surface area with potential for catalytic application in advanced oxidation processes.
  7. Wu M, Chang B, Lim TT, Oh WD, Lei J, Mi J
    J Hazard Mater, 2018 Oct 15;360:391-401.
    PMID: 30130697 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2018.08.015
    The Zn-Al mixed metal oxide (ZnAl-MMO) with a plate-like structure was derived from Zn-Al layered double hydroxide. The ZnAl-MMO with a Zn/Al molar ratio of 3:1 exhibits superior absorption ability for H2S in a simulated coal gas at 600 ℃ due to the special structure of the ZnAl-MMO. Besides ZnS, elemental sulfur is also produced during the desulfurization process. The deactivation model could well simulate the absorption behavior of H2S. The sulfidation reaction over the sorbent shows large initial reaction rate constants (1110-5390 m3 min-1  kg-1) and low activation energy (29.5 kJ mol-1). The regeneration rate of the used sorbent can reach 99.8% under the optimum conditions. The regenerated sorbents still show high sulfur capacity (ca. 30%), implying its great application potential for industrial-scale desulfurization of the hot coal gas.
  8. Lin XR, Kwon E, Hung C, Huang CW, Oh WD, Lin KA
    J Colloid Interface Sci, 2021 Feb 15;584:749-759.
    PMID: 33176929 DOI: 10.1016/j.jcis.2020.09.104
    As sulfosalicylic acid (SUA) is extensively used as a pharmaceutical product, discharge of SUA into the environment becomes an emerging environmental issue because of its low bio-degradability. Thus, SO4--based advanced oxidation processes have been proposed for degrading SUA because of many advantages of SO4-. As Oxone represents a dominant reagent for producing SO4-, and Co is the most capable metal for activating Oxone to generate SO4-, it is critical to develop an effective but easy-to-use Co-based catalysts for Oxone activation to degrade SUA. Herein, a 3D hierarchical catalyst is specially created by decorating Co3O4 nanocubes (NCs) on macroscale nitrogen-doped carbon form (NCF). This Co3O4-decorated NCF (CONCF) is free-standing, macroscale and even squeezable to exhibit interesting and versatile features. More importantly, CONCF consists of Co3O4 NCs evenly distributed on NCF without aggregation. The NCF not only serves as a support for Co3O4 NCs but also offers additional active sites to synergistically enhance catalytic activities towards Oxone activation. Therefore, CONCF exhibits a higher catalytic activity than the conventional Co3O4 nanoparticles for activating Oxone to fully eliminate SUA in 30 min with a rate constant of 0.142 min-1. CONCF exhibits a much lower Ea value of SUA degradation (35.2 kJ/mol) than reported values, and stable catalytic activities over multi-cyclic degradation of SUA. The mechanism of SUA degradation is also explored, and degradation intermediates of SUA degradation are identified to provide a possible pathway of SUA degradation. These features validate that CONCF is certainly a promising 3D hierarchical catalyst for enhanced Oxone activation to degrade SUA. The findings obtained here are also insightful to develop efficient heterogeneous Oxone-activating catalysts for eliminating emerging contaminants.
  9. Chan WP, Veksha A, Lei J, Oh WD, Dou X, Giannis A, et al.
    J Environ Manage, 2019 Mar 15;234:65-74.
    PMID: 30616190 DOI: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2018.12.107
    A novel, cost-effective and real-time process monitoring and control system was developed to maintain stable operation of waste-to-energy gasification process. It comprised a feedback loop control that utilized the differential temperatures of the oxidation and reduction zones in the gasifier to determine the regional heat-flow (endothermic or exothermic), to assess the availability of oxidizing agent (for instance, air or O2) at the char bed and to calculate the fuel feeding rate. Based on the correlations developed, the air-to-fuel ratio or the equivalence air ratio (ER) for air gasification could be instantaneously adjusted to maintain stable operation of the gasifier. This study demonstrated a simplification of complex reaction dynamics in the gasification process to differential temperature profiling of the gasifier. The monitoring and control system was tested for more than 70 h of continuous operation in a downdraft fixed-bed gasifier with refuse-derived fuel (RDF) prepared from municipal solid wastes (MSW). With the system, fuel feeding rate could be adjusted accurately to stabilize the operating temperature and ER in the gasifier and generate syngas with consistent properties. Significant reductions in the fluctuations of temperature profiles at oxidation and reduction zones (from higher than 100 °C to lower than 50 °C), differential temperatures (from ±200 to ±50 °C) in gasifier and the flow rate (from 16 ± 6.5 to 12 ± 1.8 L/min), composition of main gas components, LHV (from 6.2 ± 3.1 to 5.7 ± 1.6 MJ/Nm3) and tar content (from 8.0 ± 9.7 to 7.5 ± 4.2 g/Nm3) of syngas were demonstrated. The developed gasifier monitoring and control system is adaptable to various types (updraft, downdraft, and fluidized-bed) and scales (lab, pilot, large scale) of gasifiers with different types of fuel.
  10. Ravi R, Rajendran D, Oh WD, Mat Rasat MS, Hamzah Z, Ishak IH, et al.
    Sci Rep, 2020 11 06;10(1):19245.
    PMID: 33159109 DOI: 10.1038/s41598-020-75054-0
    Four different tests showed the effectiveness of Azolla pinnata plant extracts against Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes. In the adulticidal test, there was a significant increase in mortality as test concentration increases and A. pinnata extracts showed LC50 and LC95 values of 2572.45 and 6100.74 ppm, respectively, against Ae. aegypti and LC50 and LC95 values of 2329.34 and 5315.86 ppm, respectively, against Ae. albopictus. The ovicidal test showed 100% eggs mortality for both species tested for all the concentrations tested at 1500 ppm, 1000 ppm, 500 ppm, 250 ppm and 125 ppm. Both tested samples of Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus did not lay any eggs in the plastic cups filled with the A. pinnata extract but instead opted to lay eggs in the plastic cups filled with water during the oviposition deterrence test. Similarly, the non-choice test of Ae. aegypti mosquitoes laid eggs on the sucrose solution meant for the nutrient source of the mosquitoes instead of in the plastic cup that was designed to facilitate oviposition filled with the extract. This clearly indicates the presence of bioactive compounds which are responsible in adulticidal and ovicidal activity in Aedes mosquitoes and at the same time inducing repellence towards the mosquitoes. The LC-MS results showed mainly three important chemical compounds from A. pinnata extracts such as 1-(O-alpha-D-glucopyranosyl)-(1,3R,25R)-hexacosanetriol, Pyridate and Nicotinamide N-oxide. All these chemicals have been used for various applications such as both emulsion and non-emulsion type of cosmetics, against mosquito vector such as Culex pipens and Anopheles spp. Finally, the overall view of these chemical components from A. pinnata extracts has shown the potential for developing natural product against dengue vectors.
  11. Nguyen HT, Lee J, Kwon E, Lisak G, Thanh BX, Oh WD, et al.
    J Colloid Interface Sci, 2021 Jun;591:161-172.
    PMID: 33601102 DOI: 10.1016/j.jcis.2021.01.108
    While Cobalt nanoparticles (Co NPs) are useful for catalytic Oxone activation, it is more advantageous to embed/immobilize Co NPs on nitrogen-doped carbon substrates to provide synergy for enhancing catalytic performance. Herein, this study proposes to fabricate such a composite by utilizing covalent organic frameworks (COF) as a precursor. Through complexation of COF with Co, a stable product of Co-complexed COF (Co-COF) can be synthesized. This Co-COF is further converted through pyrolysis to N-doped carbon in which cobaltic NPs are embedded. Owing to its well-defined structures of Co-COF, the pyrolysis process transforms COF into N-doped carbon with a bubble-like morphology. Such Co NP-embedded N-doped carbon nanobubbles (CoCNB) with pores, magnetism and Co, shall be a promising catalyst. Thus, CoCNB shows a much stronger catalytic activity than commercial Co3O4 NPs to activate Oxone to degrade toxic Amaranth dye (AMD). CoCNB-activated Oxone also achieves a significantly lower Ea value of AMD degradation (i.e., 27.9 kJ/mol) than reported Ea values in previous literatures. Besides, CoCNB is still effective for complete elimination of AMD in the presence of high-concentration NaCl and surfactants, and CoCNB is also reusable over five consecutive cycles.
  12. Tuan DD, Oh WD, Ghanbari F, Lisak G, Tong S, Andrew Lin KY
    J Colloid Interface Sci, 2020 Nov 01;579:109-118.
    PMID: 32574728 DOI: 10.1016/j.jcis.2020.05.033
    As sulfate-radical (SR)-based advanced oxidation processes are increasingly implemented, Oxone has been frequently-used for generation of SR. While Co3O4 nanoparticle (NP) has been widely-accepted as a promising catalyst for activating Oxone, Co3O4 NPs tend to aggregate in water, losing their reactivity. Thus, many attempts have immobilized Co3O4 NPs on supports, especially carbonaceous substrates, because combination of Co NPs with carbon substrates offers synergistic effects for boosting catalytic activities. Moreover, carbon substrates doped with hetero-atoms (N and S) further increase electron transfer and reactivity. Therefore, it is even promising to immobilize Co NPs onto N/S-doped carbon (NSC) to form Co-embedded NSC (denoted as CoNSC) for enhancing Oxone activation. In this study, a convenient and facile technique is proposed to prepare such a CoNSC via a simple carbonization treatment of a coordination polymer of Co and trithiocyanuric acid (TTCA). The resulting CoNSC exhibits the sheet-like hexagonal morphology with the core-shell configuration, and Co NPs are well-embedded into the N/S-doped carbonaceous matrix, making it an advantageous heterogeneous catalyst for Oxone activation. As Azorubine S (ARS) decolorization is employed as a model reaction of Oxone activation, CoNSC exhibits a higher catalytic activity than pristine Co3O4 and NSC for Oxone activation to decolorize ARS. In comparison to the other reported catalysts, CoNSC also possesses a much lower Ea for ARS decolorization. CoNSC can be also reusable and stable for Oxone activation over multiple cycles without loss of catalytic activity. These features validate that CoNSC is a promising and useful Co-based catalyst for Oxone activation.
  13. Oh WD, Zaeni JRJ, Lisak G, Lin KA, Leong KH, Choong ZY
    Chemosphere, 2021 Aug;277:130313.
    PMID: 33780679 DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2021.130313
    Engineered biochar is increasingly regarded as a cost-effective and eco-friendly peroxymonosulfate (PMS) activator. Herein, biochar doped with nitrogen and sulfur moieties was prepared by pyrolysis of wood shavings and doping precursor. The doping precursor consists of either urea, thiourea or 1:1 w/w mixture of urea and thiourea (denoted as NSB-U, NSB-T and NSB-UT, respectively). The physicochemical properties of the NSBs were extensively characterized, revealing that they are of noncrystalline carbon with porous structure. The NSBs were employed as PMS activator to degrade organic pollutants particularly methylene blue (MB). It was found that NSB-UT exhibited higher MB removal rate with kapp = 0.202 min-1 due to its relatively high surface area and favorable intrinsic surface moieties (combination of graphitic N and thiophenic S). The effects of catalyst loading, PMS dosage and initial pH were evaluated. Positive enhancement of the MB removal rate can be obtained by carefully increasing the catalyst loading or PMS dosage. Meanwhile, the MB removal rate is greatly influenced by pH due to electrostatic interactions and pH dependent reactions. The NSB-UT can be reused for several cycles to some extent and its catalytic activity can be restored by thermal treatment. Based on the radical scavenger study and XPS analysis, the nonradical pathway facilitated by the graphitic N and thiophenic S active sites are revealed to be the dominant reaction pathway. Overall, the results of this study show that engineered biochar derived from locally available biowaste can be transformed into PMS activator for environmental applications.
  14. Bao Y, Oh WD, Lim TT, Wang R, Webster RD, Hu X
    Water Res, 2019 03 15;151:64-74.
    PMID: 30594091 DOI: 10.1016/j.watres.2018.12.007
    In this work, nano-bimetallic Co/Fe oxides with different stoichiometric Co/Fe ratios were prepared using a novel one-step solution combustion method. The nano-bimetallic Co/Fe oxides were used for sulfamethoxazole (SMX) degradation via peroxymonosulfate (PMS) activation. The stoichiometric efficiencies of the as-prepared nano-bimetallic catalysts were calculated and compared for the first time. The radical generation was identified by electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) as well as chemical quenching experiments, in which different scavengers were used and compared. The catalytic PMS activation mechanism in the presence of catalyst was examined by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The results showed that besides SO4•- and •OH, •OOH was also detected in the PMS/CoFeO2.5 system. Meanwhile, in addition to the previously proposed radical oxidation pathway, the results showed that SMX degradation also involved a non-radical oxidation, which could be verified by the degradation experiment without catalyst as well as the detection of 1O2. In the PMS activation process, cobalt functioned as the active site on CoFeO2.5 while Fe oxide functioned as the adsorption site. The electron transfer mechanism was proposed based on the XPS and metal leaching results. Additionally, via the detection of transformation products, different SMX transformation pathways involving nitration, hydroxylation and hydrolysis in the PMS/CoFeO2.5 system were proposed.
  15. Oh WD, Ho YC, Mohamad M, Ho CD, Ravi R, Lim JW
    Materials (Basel), 2021 Sep 14;14(18).
    PMID: 34576510 DOI: 10.3390/ma14185284
    Activated zero-valent iron (Ac-ZVI) coupled with Fe3+ was employed to activate peroxymonosulfate (PMS) and peroxydisulfate (PDS) for acid orange 7 (AO7) removal. Fe3+ was used to promote Fe2+ liberation from Ac-ZVI as an active species for reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. The factors affecting AO7 degradation, namely, the Ac-ZVI:Fe3+ ratio, PMS/PDS dosage, and pH, were compared. In both PMS and PDS systems, the AO7 degradation rate increased gradually with increasing Fe3+ concentration at fixed Ac-ZVI loading due to the Fe3+-promoted liberation of Fe2+ from Ac-ZVI. The AO7 degradation rate increased with increasing PMS/PDS dosage due to the greater amount of ROS generated. The degradation rate in the PDS system decreased while the degradation rate in the PMS system increased with increasing pH due to the difference in the PDS and PMS activation mechanisms. On the basis of the radical scavenging study, sulfate radical was identified as the dominant ROS in both systems. The physicochemical properties of pristine and used Ac-ZVI were characterized, indicating that the used Ac-ZVI had an increased BET specific surface area due to the formation of Fe2O3 nanoparticles during PMS/PDS activation. Nevertheless, both systems displayed good reusability and stability for at least three cycles, indicating that the systems are promising for pollutant removal.
  16. Ng JJ, Sim LC, Oh WD, Saravanan P, Tan B, Leong KH
    Environ Sci Pollut Res Int, 2022 Dec;29(57):86068-86076.
    PMID: 34523092 DOI: 10.1007/s11356-021-16449-y
    Herein, we report a detailed study on creating heterojunction between graphitic carbon nitride (g-C3N4) and bismuth phosphate (BiPO4), enhancing the unpaired free electron mobility. This leads to an accelerated photocatalysis of 2,4-dichlorophenols (2,4-DCPs) under sunlight irradiation. The heterojunction formation was efficaciously conducted via a modest thermal deposition technique. The function of g-C3N4 plays a significant role in generating free electrons under sunlight irradiation. Together, the generated electrons at the g-C3N4 conduction band (CB) are transferred and trapped by the BiPO4 to form active superoxide anion radicals (•O2-). These active radicals will be accountable for the photodegradation of 2,4-DCPs. The synthesized composite characteristics were methodically examined through several chemical and physical studies. Due to the inimitable features of both g-C3N4 and BiPO4, its heterojunction formation, 2.5wt% BiPO4/g-C3N4 achieved complete 2,4-DCP removal (100%) in 90 min under sunlight irradiation. This is due to the presence of g-C3N4 that enhanced electron mobility through the formation of heterojunctions that lengthens the electron-hole pairs' lifetime and maximizes the entire solar spectrum absorption to generate active electrons at the g-C3N4 conduction band. Thus, this formation significantly draws the attention for future environmental remediation, especially in enhancing the entire solar spectrum's harvesting.
  17. Gasim MF, Lim JW, Low SC, Lin KA, Oh WD
    Chemosphere, 2022 Jan;287(Pt 4):132458.
    PMID: 34610377 DOI: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2021.132458
    Over the past decade, there has been a surge of interest in using char (hydrochar or biochar) derived from biomass as persulfate (PS, either peroxymonosulfate or peroxydisulfate) activator for anthropogenic pollutants removal. While extensive investigation showed that char could be used as a PS activator, its sustainability over prolonged application is equivocal. This review provides an assessment of the knowledge gap related to the sustainability of char as a PS activator. The desirable char properties for PS activation are identified, include the high specific surface area and favorable surface chemistry. Various synthesis strategies to obtain the desirable properties during biomass pre-treatment, hydrochar and biochar synthesis, and char post-treatment are discussed. Thereafter, factors related to the sustainability of employing char as a PS activator for anthropogenic pollutants removal are critically evaluated. Among the critical factors include performance uncertainty, competing adsorption process, char stability during PS activation, biomass precursor variation, scalability, and toxic components in char. Finally, some potential research directions are provided. Fulfilling the sustainability factors will provide opportunity to employ char as an economical and efficient catalyst for sustainable environmental remediation.
  18. Choong ZY, Lin KA, Lisak G, Lim TT, Oh WD
    J Hazard Mater, 2022 03 15;426:128077.
    PMID: 34953256 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.128077
    Catalytic activation of peroxymonosulfate (PMS) and peroxydisulfate (PDS) (or collectively known as persulfate, PS) using carbocatalyst is increasingly gaining attention as a promising technology for sustainable recalcitrant pollutant removal in water. Single heteroatom doping using either N, S, B or P is widely used to enhance the performance of the carbocatalyst for PS activation. However, the performance enhancement from single heteroatom doping is limited by the type of heteroatom used. To further enhance the performance of the carbocatalyst beyond the limit of single heteroatom doping, multi-heteroatom doping can be conducted. This review aims to provide a state-of-the-art overview on the development of multi-heteroatom-doped carbocatalyst for PS activation. The potential synergistic and antagonistic interactions of various heteroatoms including N and B, N and S, N and P, and N and halogen for PS activation are evaluated. Thereafter, the preparation strategies to develop multi-heteroatom-doped carbocatalyst including one-step and multi-step preparation approaches along with the characterization techniques are discussed. Evidence and summary of the performance of multi-heteroatom-doped carbocatalyst for various recalcitrant pollutants removal via PS activation are also provided. Finally, the prospects of employing multi-heteroatom-doped carbocatalyst including the need to study the correlation between different heteroatom combination, surface moiety type, and amount of dopant with the PS activation mechanism, identifying the best heteroatom combination, improving the durability of the carbocatalyst, evaluating the feasibility for full-scale application, developing low-cost multi-heteroatom-doped carbocatalyst, and assessing the environmental impact are also briefly discussed.
  19. Lin KA, Oh WD, Zheng MW, Kwon E, Lee J, Lin JY, et al.
    J Colloid Interface Sci, 2021 Jun 15;592:416-429.
    PMID: 33691223 DOI: 10.1016/j.jcis.2021.02.030
    Aerobic oxidation of 5-Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) to 2,5-Diformylfuran (DFF) using O2 gas represents a sustainable approach for valorization of lignocellulosic compounds. As manganese dioxide (MnO2) is validated as a useful oxidation catalyst and many crystalline forms of MnO2 exist, it is critical to explore how the crystalline structures of MnO2 influence their physical/chemical properties, which, in turn, determine catalytic activities of MnO2 crystals for HMF oxidation to DFF. In particular, six MnO2 crystals, α-MnO2, β-MnO2, γ-MnO2, δ-MnO2, ε-MnO2, and λ-MnO2 are prepared and investigated for their catalytic activities for HMF oxidation to DFF. With different morphologies and crystalline structures, these MnO2 crystals possess very distinct surficial chemistry, redox capabilities, and textural properties, making these MnO2 exhibit different catalytic activities towards HMF conversion. Especially, β-MnO2 can produce much higher DFF per surface area than other MnO2 crystals. β-MnO2 could achieve the highest CHMF = 99% and YDFF = 97%, which are much higher than the reported values in literature, possibly because the surficial reactivity of β-MnO2 appears to be highest in comparison to other MnO2 crystals. Especially, β-MnO2 could exhibit YDFF > 90% over 5 cycles of reusability test, and maintain its crystalline structure, revealing its advantageous feature for aerobic oxidation of HMF to DFF. Through this study, the relationship between morphology, surface chemistry, and catalytic activity of MnO2 with different crystal forms is elucidated for providing scientific insights into design, application and development of MnO2-based materials for aerobic oxidation of bio-derived molecules to value-added products.
  20. Veksha A, Yin K, Moo JGS, Oh WD, Ahamed A, Chen WQ, et al.
    J Hazard Mater, 2020 04 05;387:121256.
    PMID: 31951979 DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2019.121256
    Flexible plastic packaging waste causes serious environmental issues due to challenges in recycling. This study investigated the conversion of flexible plastic packaging waste with 11.8 and 27.5 wt.% polyethylene terephthalate (PET) (denoted as PET-12 and PET-28, respectively) into oil and multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs). The mixtures were initially pyrolyzed and the produced volatiles were processed over 9.0 wt.% Fe2O3 supported on ZSM-5 (400 °C) to remove oxygenated hydrocarbons (catalytic cracking of terephthalic and benzoic acids) that deteriorate oil quality. The contents of oxygenated hydrocarbons were decreased in oil from 4.6 and 9.4 wt.% per mass of PET-12 and PET-28, respectively, to undetectable levels. After catalytic cracking, the oil samples had similar contents of gasoline, diesel and heavy oil/wax fractions. The non-condensable gas was converted into MWCNTs over 0.9 wt.% Ni supported on CaCO3 (700 °C). The type of plastic packaging influenced the yields (2.4 and 1.5 wt.% per mass of PET-12 and PET-28, respectively) and the properties of MWCNTs due to the differences in gas composition. Regarding the electrocatalytic application, both MWCNTs from PET-12 and PET-28 outperformed commercial MWCNTs and Pt-based electrodes during oxygen evolution reaction, suggesting that MWCNTs from flexible plastic packaging can potentially replace conventional electrode materials.
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