The most promising technology for destroying Toxic Organic Compounds in wastewater treatment is using photocatalyst to generate hydroxyl radicals (near UV/TiO2). Among these, TiO2 is the most commonly used photocatalytic oxidant in commercial solar- and lamp-based detoxification systems. Photocatalyst coupled with UV lights can oxidize organic pollutants into nontoxic materials, such as CO2 and water and can disinfect certain bacteria. This technology is very effective at removing further hazardous organic compounds (TOCs) and at killing a variety of bacteria and some viruses in the secondary wastewater treatment. Pilot projects demonstrated that photocatalytic detoxification systems could effectively kill fecal coliform bacteria in secondary wastewater treatment.
Studies have shown that after 35 minutes of contact time, more than 95% removal of TCE, cis-DCE, toluene, EB, and xylenes was achieved, and more than 75% removal of PCE was observed. In the laboratory of Professor Anderson at the University of Wisconsin, studies have shown that both arsenic species can be removed in a photocatalytic adsorption process using a novel thin-film material. These new materials not only adsorb both species equally well but have significantly high capacities for removing. In this research project, Microporous Oxides Science and Technology will select an appropriate substrate for these thin-film adsorbents and obtain data to demonstrate that this process is not only superior to present arsenic removal systems, but competes favorably with other systems in cost while treating other types of contaminants
Photocatalyst system has been tested and proven to be suitable to pre-treat wastewater that will be reused or to purify polluted drinking water for small communities or individual households in Germany. This technology can be used for various applications, especially in regions that have a high amount of solar radiation per year. In addition to being inexpensive, the photocatalytic reactor is easy to construct and uses a readily available low-wattage fluorescent light.