Treatment of phenylmercury salts by heterogeneous photocatalysis over TiO(2).

Abstract

UV/TiO(2) photocatalysis of phenylmercury salts in aqueous solutions has been performed starting from both acetate (C(6)H(5)HgCH(3)CO(2), PMA) and chloride (C(6)H(5)HgCl, PMC) salts, in the presence or the absence of oxygen at acidic pH. Removal of Hg(II) in solution took place with the simultaneous deposit of dark or pale gray solids on the photocatalyst, identified as metallic Hg (when starting from PMA) or mixtures of Hg(0) and Hg(2)Cl(2) (when starting from PMC). Partial mineralization of the organic part of both compounds has also been achieved. Hg(II) removal and mineralization were enhanced in the absence of oxygen. PMA photocatalysis followed a saturation kinetics, going from first order at low concentration to zero order at higher concentrations (>0.5mM). For PMA, reaction was faster at high pH (11) with formation of mixtures of Hg and HgO. Phenol was detected as a product of the reaction in both cases, PMA and PMC, and no formation of dangerous methyl- or ethylmercury species was observed in the first case. A mechanism for the photocatalytic reaction has been proposed. The fact that calomel was found as a deposit when starting from PMC under nitrogen suggests that the mechanism of Hg(II) transformation proceeds through successive one-electron transfer reactions passing by mercurous forms.

Cite this paper

@article{Fournire2007TreatmentOP, title={Treatment of phenylmercury salts by heterogeneous photocatalysis over TiO(2).}, author={Emmanuel M de la Fourni{\`e}re and A. G. Leyva and Eduardo A Gautier and Marta I Litter}, journal={Chemosphere}, year={2007}, volume={69 5}, pages={682-8} }