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Wet air oxidation of trinitrotoluene manufacturing red water

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An effective use of the wet air oxidation (WAO) process at a temperature of 340°C and 0.8 MPa PO2(25°C) to treat diluted trinitrotoluene (TNT) red water was previously demonstrated. This study presents the results of a 1-hour WAO of red water at temperatures ranging from 200° to 320°C, and PO2 from 0.13 to 1.31 MPa, in terms of contaminant reduction and intermediate appearance. Also, comparison is made between the toxicity of the raw and the WAO-treated red water on two biological systems.

Results show the WAO removal efficiency to be a function primarily of temperature and, to a lesser extent, of PO2 . Acetic acid and 1,3-dinitrobenzene (DNB) accumulated at lower temperatures. For example, total organic carbon (TOC) and chemical oxygen demand (COD) removals at 260°C and 0.62 MPa PO2 were 77 and 91%, respectively. Acetic acid and DNB concentrations were 60 and 21 mg/L, respectively. At 320°C and 0.62 MPa, however, the acetic acid and DNB levels were 38 and 6 mg/L, respectively. The corresponding TOC and COD reductions were 94 and 99%.

Organic products formed during the WAO of red water appear to be responsible for adverse effects on nitrite production rates of enriched, unacclimated Nitrosomonas, as compared with raw red water. The WAOtreated water, however, had no effect on the heterotrophic activated sludge capability in degrading glucose.

Keywords: 1,3-dinitrobenzene; Nitrosomonas; dinitrotoluene sulfonates; nitrobenzene; red water; trinitrotoluene; wet air oxidation

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: May 1, 1993

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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