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Treatability of DNT process wastewater by supercritical water oxidation

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This study focused on the treatment of dinitrotoluene (DNT) process wastewaters by supercritical water oxidation (SCWO). Major organic components found in the DNT process wastewaters were 2-nitrophenol, 4-nitrophenol, 2,4-dinitrophenol, 4,6-dinitro-ortho-cresol, phenol, and dinitrotoluene. Tests were conducted using a 20-cm3 batch reactor and two 120-cm3/min continuous-flow reactor systems. Separate oxidant tests employed oxygen and hydrogen peroxide. Organic destruction efficiencies of target compounds were obtained at supercritical and subcritical water conditions. Temperatures and pressures, respectively, ranged from 250°C to 500°C and 140 bar to 310 bar. The reaction times varied from 1 minute to 7 minutes. Wastewaters premixed with a biological sludge were also tested.

SCWO was capable of destroying the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) priority pollutants found in the DNT process wastewater. Under SCWO conditions, destruction efficiencies greater than 99% were achieved.

Keywords: nitration process wastewaters; organic pollutants; supercritical water oxidation; treatability

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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