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Synthesis and evaluation of LaFeO3-based catalysts for photo-Fenton degradation of dyes under visible light

Phan, Thi To Nga (2019) Synthesis and evaluation of LaFeO3-based catalysts for photo-Fenton degradation of dyes under visible light. PhD thesis, Murdoch University.

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Synthetic dyes are widely used in many industries, including textile production, plastic manufacturing, and food processing. Currently, approximately 30000 – 150000 tons of dyes are being discharged into waterways, posing a threat to human health as well as the aquatic environment. Most of these dyes can persist in aquatic systems for a long period due to their resistance to bacterial and chemical attacks. One way to deal with this issue appears to be the photo-Fenton oxidation process, which is efficient in catalyzing the decomposition of recalcitrant organic dyes in water.

Recently, perovskite oxides with the general formula ABO3 (A = alkaline earth or rare earth element; B = transition metal) have been recognized as an efficient form of heterogeneous catalysts to participate in the photo-Fenton process for the degradation of organic dyes. LaFeO3 is one of the widely studied perovskite oxides due to its non-toxicity, relative stability, and favorable optical property. The development of a heterogeneous photo-Fenton process, especially using visible light, is a sensible approach from the practical application point of view, both in terms of cost and energy effectiveness, and was, therefore, the focus of this study.

LaFeO3-based catalysts were developed and tested for their efficiency to degrade organic dyes, such as Rhodamine B (RhB), Methyl Orange (MO), and Methylene Blue (MB), via visible-light photo-Fenton reaction. The morphological, structural and chemical properties of the catalysts were studied in detail. Their catalytic activity, stability, and reusability in the photo- Fenton degradation of dyes were assessed, followed by the optimization of operation conditions (e.g., H2O2 concentration, catalyst dosage, and initial solution pH) targeting at maximum dye removal. Based on the observations, possible reaction mechanisms for the LaFeO3-based catalysts that improved photo-Fenton degradation efficiency were proposed. A preliminary techno-economic assessment for the practical application of the process was also performed.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Engineering and Energy
Supervisor(s): Nikoloski, Aleksandar and Bahri, Parisa
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