Considerable Fenton and photo-Fenton reactivity of passivated zero-valent iron - Université de Rennes Access content directly
Journal Articles RSC Advances Year : 2016

Considerable Fenton and photo-Fenton reactivity of passivated zero-valent iron


The vulnerability of Zero-Valent Iron (ZVI) to passivation, which significantly decreases its surface reactivity, limits its use as a reducing agent in environmental remediation applications (e.g., permeable reactive barriers). Passivation of ZVI occurs rapidly in ambient environments due to the presence of oxygen and water, as well as during the reduction of contaminants (e.g. chlorinated and nitrated organic compounds) even in anoxic conditions. Passivated zero-valent iron (pZVI) particles are typically covered by an iron (hydr)oxide layer that entails a loss of the typical properties of this material, prevents the reductive activity to take place, and could made pZVI a waste to be disposed of. This work shows that pZVI has considerable Fenton (oxidizing) reactivity in the presence of H2O2 at acidic pH. The pZVI-Fenton process likely involves reaction between H2O2 and the pZVI surface or near-surface species, because the detected levels of leached Fe in the solution bulk were insufficient to account for the observed degradation processes. Still, leached Fe in the solution at pH 2 and 3 would be too concentrated for some possible applications (e.g. wastewater treatment, which would require an additional precipitation step to remove excess Fe). In such a case, operation at pH 4 would be preferred to maintain reasonable reactivity without measurable Fe leaching. The pZVI-Fenton process was inactive above pH 4, but reactivity could be extended up to pH 5 by UVA irradiation. Surprisingly, a pZVI sample that underwent an additional 78 day aging in aqueous solution exhibited a considerable ability to photochemically remove phenol despite a slower initial stage. These properties account for the possible use of a potential waste in decontamination reactions. © 2016 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

Dates and versions

hal-01381127 , version 1 (14-10-2016)



M. Minella, E. Sappa, K. Hanna, F. Barsotti, V. Maurino, et al.. Considerable Fenton and photo-Fenton reactivity of passivated zero-valent iron. RSC Advances, 2016, 6 (89), pp.86752--86761. ⟨10.1039/c6ra17515e⟩. ⟨hal-01381127⟩
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