Indexed on: 09 Mar '17Published on: 09 Mar '17Published in: Environmental Science & Technology
Fenton systems are interesting alternative to advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) applied in soil or water remediation. 1,2-Dihydroxybenzenes (1,2-DHBs) are able to amplify the reactivity of Fenton systems and have been extensively studied in biological systems and for AOP applications. To develop efficient AOPs based on Fenton systems driven by 1,2-DHBs, the change in reactivity mediated by different 1,2-DHBs must be understood. For this, a systematic study of the reactivity of Fenton-like systems driven by 1,2-DHBs with different substituents at position 4 was performed. The substituent effect was analyzed using the Hammett constant (σ), which has positive values for electron-withdrawing groups (EWGs) and negative values for electron-donating groups (EDGs). The reactivity of each system was determined from the degradation of a recalcitrant azo dye and hydroxyl radical (HO•) production. The relationship between these reactivities and the ability of each 1,2-DHB to reduce Fe(III) was determined. From these results, we propose two pathways for HO• production. The pathway for Fenton-like systems driven by 1,2-DHBs with EDGs depends only on the Fe(III) reduction mediated by 1,2-DHB. In Fenton-like reactions driven by 1,2-DHBs with EWGs, the Fe(III) reduction is not primarily responsible for increasing the HO• production by this system in the early stages.