Pharmaceuticals have recently been detected at low concentrations in natural bodies of water, wastewater, and even treated drinking water. This work explores advanced oxidation/reduction processes, which are an emerging technology that show great promise for the removal of pharmaceutical
compounds from water in an efficient and economical manner. Fluoroquinolones, a representative set of compounds chosen for this study, are likely to be removed from water by this method. The rate constants between these compounds and the reactive species, hydroxyl radical and hydrated electron,
are fast, and significant degradation of the compounds is seen in both gamma radiation and ultraviolet light. Fluorescence can be used to observe the degradation. Furthermore, mass spectroscopy was used to identify the byproducts formed due to reaction with hydroxyl radical.
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