Abstract

Introduction: Penicillin G (PG) is used in a variety of infectious diseases, extensively. Generally, when antibiotics are introduced into the food chain, they pose a threat to the environment and can risk health outcomes. The aim of the present study was the removal of Penicillin G from an aqueous solution through an integrated system of UV/ZnO and UV/WO3 with Ultrasound pretreatment.

Methods: In this descriptive-analytical work dealing with the removal of Penicillin G from an aqueous solution, four significant variables, contact time (60-120 min), Penicillin G concentration (50-150 mg/L), ZnO dose (200-400 mg/L), and WO3 dose (100-200 mg/L) were investigated. Experiments were performed in a Pyrex reactor (batch, 1 Lit) with an artificial UV 100-Watt medium pressure mercury lamp, coupled with ultrasound (100 W, 40 KHz) for PG pre-treatment. Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) was selected to follow the performance of the photo-catalytic process and sonolysis. The experiments were based on a Central Composite Design (CCD) and analyzed by Response Surface Methodology (RSM). A mathematical model of the process was designed according to the proposed degradation scheme. 

Results: The results showed that the maximum removal of PG occurred in ultrasonic/UV/WO3 in the presence of 50 mg/L WO3 and contact time of 120 minutes. In addition, an increase in the PG concentration caused a decrease in COD removal. As the initial concentration of the catalyst increased, the COD removal also increased. The maximum COD removal (91.3%) achieved by 200 mg/L WO3 and 400 mg/l ZnO, a contact time of 120 minutes, and an antibiotic concentration of 50 mg/L. All of the variables in the process efficiency were found to be significant (p < 0.05). Catalyst dose and contact time were shown to have a positive effect on the response (p < 0.05). 

Conclusion: The research data supported the conclusion that the combination of advanced oxidation process of sonolysis and photocatalytic (sonophotocatalytic) were applicable and environmentally friendly processes, which preferably can be applied extensively.

 

Keywords: Integrated process, Penicillin G, Advanced oxidation, COD removal, Response Surface Methodology
 
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