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Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Analytical Chemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 August 2023) | Viewed by 39672

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Guest Editor
Laboratory of Analytical Chemistry, School of Chemistry, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, 54124 Thessaloniki, Greece
Interests: analytical chemistry; sample preparation; chromatography; HPLC; method validation; method development; separation science; food analysis; bioanalysis; environmental analysis; green analytical chemistry; sorptive extraction; microextraction techniques
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Guest Editor
Chemistry Department, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, GR54124 Thessaloniki, Greece
Interests: materials chemistry; materials characterization; nanomaterials; graphene oxide; activated carbon; wastewater treatment; separation; adsorption; catalytic oxidation; environmental applications
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Department of Chemistry, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece
Interests: environmental chemistry; fate of organic micropollutants (persistent compounds, emerging contaminants, and endocrine disrupting compounds) in aquatic environment and technical systems; preparation and analysis of environmental samples; drinking water quality-regulated and emerging disinfection by-products; quality of surface and ground waters; chemical characterization of airborne atmospheric particles; assessment of toxicity of environmental samples; oxidation and sorption processes for water and wastewater treatment
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Environmental analysis is one of the most relevant scientific fields in chemistry that contributes to the monitoring of environmental pollution.

Green methodologies should be developed and applied in order to investigate the pollution impact on the environment.

The scope of this issue is to describe the state of the art in both analysis and sample pretreatment with regard to the demands of green perspectives for the examination of the current status of environmental pollution.

Analytical scientists are invited to present their new strategies to fulfill all the requirements for reduction of waste, energy consumption, use of solvents, etc.

Prof. Dr. Victoria Samanidou
Prof. Dr. Eleni Deliyanni
Prof. Dr. Dimitra Voutsa
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Evironmental analysis
  • environmental analytical chemistry
  • environmental monitoring
  • pollution control
  • pollution monitoring
  • green methodologies

Published Papers (14 papers)

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Research

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14 pages, 3357 KiB  
Article
A Turbidity-Compensation Method for Nitrate Measurement Based on Ultraviolet Difference Spectroscopy
by Jing Dong, Junwu Tang, Guojun Wu and Ruizhuo Li
Molecules 2023, 28(1), 250; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules28010250 - 28 Dec 2022
Viewed by 1976
Abstract
To solve the problem that turbidity in water has a significant effect on the spectra of nitrate and reduces the accuracy of nitrate detection, a turbidity-compensation method for nitrate measurement based on ultraviolet difference spectra is proposed. The effect of turbidity on the [...] Read more.
To solve the problem that turbidity in water has a significant effect on the spectra of nitrate and reduces the accuracy of nitrate detection, a turbidity-compensation method for nitrate measurement based on ultraviolet difference spectra is proposed. The effect of turbidity on the absorption spectra of nitrate was studied by using the difference spectra of the mixed solution and a nitrate solution. The results showed that the same turbidity had different effects on the absorbance of different concentrations of nitrate. The change in absorbance due to turbidity decreased with an increase in the nitrate concentration at wavelengths from 200 nm to 230 nm, although this change was constant when the wavelength was greater than 230 nm. On the basis of this characteristic, we combined the residual sum of squares (RSS) and interval partial least squares (iPLS) to select wavelengths of 230–240 nm as the optimal modeling interval. Furthermore, the turbidity-compensation model was established by the linear fitting of the difference spectra of various levels of turbidity. The absorption spectra of the nitrate were extracted by subtracting the turbidity-compensation curve from the original spectra of the water samples, and the nitrate concentration was calculated by using a partial least squares (PLS)-based nitrate-prediction model. The experimental results showed that the average relative error of the nitrate predictions was reduced by 50.33% to 1.33% by the proposed turbidity-compensation method. This indicated that this method can better correct the deviation in nitrate’s absorbance caused by turbidity and improve the accuracy of nitrate predictions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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17 pages, 2725 KiB  
Article
Simultaneous Dispersive Liquid–Liquid Microextraction and Determination of Different Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in Surface Water
by Zaual Temerdashev, Surendra Prasad, Tatiana Musorina, Tatiana Chervonnaya and Zhanna Arutyunyan
Molecules 2022, 27(23), 8586; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27238586 - 5 Dec 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1436
Abstract
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are a class of persistent organic pollutants of water, and their determination at trace levels in the aquatic ecosystems is essential. In this work, an ultrasound-assisted dispersive liquid–liquid microextraction (DLLME) procedure was suggested utilizing a binary dispersive agent for [...] Read more.
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are a class of persistent organic pollutants of water, and their determination at trace levels in the aquatic ecosystems is essential. In this work, an ultrasound-assisted dispersive liquid–liquid microextraction (DLLME) procedure was suggested utilizing a binary dispersive agent for recovery of different molecular weight polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) from waters. The detection was carried out by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS) as well as high-performance liquid chromatography with fluorescence and diode-array detection (HPLC-FD/PDA). The method was optimized for the extraction of analytes with respect to the mixture composition, ratios of components, ultrasonication time and centrifugation parameters. The analytical schemes for PAHs extraction from water samples using different ratios of extraction and dispersive solvents are reported. The mixture consisting of chloroform and methanol was applied for the extraction of PAHs containing two or three fused aromatic rings; the mixture of chloroform and acetonitrile is suitable for PAHs containing more than four aromatic rings. The mixture of chloroform:acetone + acetonitrile was applied in the universal scheme and allowed for the simultaneous extraction of 20 PAHs with different structures. The developed sample preparation schemes were combined with GC-MS and HPLC-FD/PDA, which allowed us to determine the analytes at low concentrations (from 0.0002 µg/L) with the recoveries exceeding 80% and relative standard deviations of about 8%. The developed methods for the determination of 20 PAHs were applied to the analysis of water samples from the Karasun Lake (Krasnodar), Azov Sea (Temryuk) and Black Sea (Sochi). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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12 pages, 3879 KiB  
Article
Parabens Permeation through Biological Membranes: A Comparative Study Using Franz Cell Diffusion System and Biomimetic Liquid Chromatography
by Ilaria Neri, Sonia Laneri, Ritamaria Di Lorenzo, Irene Dini, Giacomo Russo and Lucia Grumetto
Molecules 2022, 27(13), 4263; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27134263 - 1 Jul 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2303
Abstract
Parabens (PBs) are used as preservatives to extend the shelf life of various foodstuffs, and pharmaceutical and cosmetic preparations. In this work, the membrane barrier passage potential of a subset of seven parabens, i.e., methyl-, ethyl-, propyl- isopropyl, butyl, isobutyl, and benzyl paraben, [...] Read more.
Parabens (PBs) are used as preservatives to extend the shelf life of various foodstuffs, and pharmaceutical and cosmetic preparations. In this work, the membrane barrier passage potential of a subset of seven parabens, i.e., methyl-, ethyl-, propyl- isopropyl, butyl, isobutyl, and benzyl paraben, along with their parent compound, p-hydroxy benzoic acid, were studied. Thus, the Franz cell diffusion (FDC) method, biomimetic liquid chromatography (BLC), and in silico prediction were performed to evaluate the soundness of both describing their permeation through the skin. While BLC allowed the achievement of a full scale of affinity for membrane phospholipids of the PBs under research, the permeation of parabens through Franz diffusion cells having a carbon chain > ethyl could not be measured in a fully aqueous medium, i.e., permeation enhancer-free conditions. Our results support that BLC and in silico prediction alone can occasionally be misleading in the permeability potential assessment of these preservatives, emphasizing the need for a multi-technique and integrated experimental approach. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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15 pages, 1753 KiB  
Article
Monitoring of Pollutants Content in Bottled and Tap Drinking Water in Italy
by Giacomo Russo, Sonia Laneri, Ritamaria Di Lorenzo, Ilaria Neri, Irene Dini, Roberto Ciampaglia and Lucia Grumetto
Molecules 2022, 27(13), 3990; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27133990 - 21 Jun 2022
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 1904
Abstract
The concentration levels of thirteen organic pollutants and selected heavy metals were investigated in 40 plastics bottled and tap water samples. Some of the selected contaminants have an ascertained or suspected endocrine disrupting activity, such as Bisphenol A (BPA) and its analogs, and [...] Read more.
The concentration levels of thirteen organic pollutants and selected heavy metals were investigated in 40 plastics bottled and tap water samples. Some of the selected contaminants have an ascertained or suspected endocrine disrupting activity, such as Bisphenol A (BPA) and its analogs, and Bis 2-ethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP), which are used by industries as plasticizers. The most frequently detected pollutants were Bisphenol AF (BPAF) (detection frequency (DF) = 67.5%, mean 387.21 ng L−1), DEHP (DF = 62.5%, mean 46.19 µg L−1) and BPA (DF = 60.0%, mean 458.57 ng L−1), with higher concentration levels found in tap waters. Furthermore, a possible level of exposure to thirteen pollutants via drinking water intake was calculated. Our findings show that, even though the occurrence of contaminants and heavy metals in drinking waters does not pose an immediate, acute health risk for the population, their levels should be constantly monitored and “hard-wired” into everyday practice. Indeed, the health impact to the continuous and simultaneous intake of a huge variety of xenobiotics from various sources by humans is complex and still not fully understood. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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17 pages, 5099 KiB  
Article
Selective Removal of the Emerging Dye Basic Blue 3 via Molecularly Imprinting Technique
by Maria Sadia, Izaz Ahmad, Faiz Ali, Muhammad Zahoor, Riaz Ullah, Farhat Ali Khan, Essam A. Ali and Amir Sohail
Molecules 2022, 27(10), 3276; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27103276 - 19 May 2022
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 1790
Abstract
A molecularly imprinting polymer (MIP) was synthesized for Basic Blue 3 dye and applied to wastewater for the adsorption of a target template. The MIPs were synthesized by bulk polymerization using methacrylic acid (MAA) and ethylene glycol dimethacrylate (EGDMA). Basic Blue 3 dye [...] Read more.
A molecularly imprinting polymer (MIP) was synthesized for Basic Blue 3 dye and applied to wastewater for the adsorption of a target template. The MIPs were synthesized by bulk polymerization using methacrylic acid (MAA) and ethylene glycol dimethacrylate (EGDMA). Basic Blue 3 dye (BB-3), 2,2′-azobisisobutyronitrile (AIBN) and methanol were used as a functional monomer, cross linker, template, initiator and porogenic solvent, respectively, while non-imprinting polymers (NIP) were synthesized by the same procedure but without template molecules. The contact time was 25 min for the adsorption of BB-3 dye from 10 mL of spiked solution using 25 mg polymer. The adsorption of dye (BB-3) on the MIP followed the pseudo-second order kinetic (k2 = 0.0079 mg·g−1·min−1), and it was according to the Langmuir isotherm, with maximum adsorption capacities of 78.13, 85.4 and 99.0 mg·g−1 of the MIP at 283 K, 298 K and 313 K, respectively and 7 mg·g−1 for the NIP. The negative values of ΔG° indicate that the removal of dye by the molecularly imprinting polymer and non-imprinting polymer is spontaneous, and the positive values of ΔH° and ΔS° indicate that the process is endothermic and occurred with the increase of randomness. The selectivity of the MIP for BB-3 dye was investigated in the presence of structurally similar as well as different dyes, but the MIP showed higher selectivity than the NIP. The imprinted polymer showed 96% rebinding capacity at 313 K towards the template, and the calculated imprinted factor and Kd value were 10.73 and 2.62, respectively. In this work, the MIP showed a greater potential of selectivity for the template from wastewater relative to the closely similar compounds. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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28 pages, 2448 KiB  
Article
Total Release of 21 Indicator Pharmaceuticals Listed by the Swedish Medical Products Agency from Wastewater Treatment Plants to Surface Water Bodies in the 1.3 Million Populated County Skåne (Scania), Sweden
by Erland Björklund and Ola Svahn
Molecules 2022, 27(1), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27010077 - 23 Dec 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 3030
Abstract
In 2017, the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency published a report on advanced wastewater treatment for the removal of pharmaceutical residues and stated that advanced treatment should be implemented where it will make the largest difference from an environmental perspective. However, the report also [...] Read more.
In 2017, the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency published a report on advanced wastewater treatment for the removal of pharmaceutical residues and stated that advanced treatment should be implemented where it will make the largest difference from an environmental perspective. However, the report also concluded that this need cannot be specified with existing data, but consideration must be made of local conditions. Two considerations are (1) the discharged amount of pharmaceutical into receiving water bodies and (2) the turnover of water in the recipient, where the highest risks are related to recipients with a low water turnover and low dilution. The current project comprised eight different WWTPs distributed throughout the entire County Skåne (Scania) in Sweden, with a population of ca. 1,300,000 persons. In total, 21 of 22 pharmaceuticals were analyzed according to the list proposed by the Swedish Medical Products Agency 2015. The results show that large amounts of pharmaceuticals are released from the WWTPs yearly to Scanian recipients. The total discharge of pharmaceuticals from the eight treatment plants adds up to 71 kg of these 21 substances alone, mainly comprising metoprolol, which is a drug that lowers blood pressure, and the analgesic drug diclofenac. Additionally, carbamazepine, losartan, naproxen and oxazepam were present in significant concentrations. These represented three illnesses that are very common: high blood pressure, inflammation/pain and depression/anxiety. The concentrations were generally in line with previous national Swedish screenings. It was estimated that, when one million cubic meters (1,000,000 m3) of wastewater is discharged, almost 4 kg of the 21 pharmaceuticals is released. The total volume wastewater release by the >90 WWTPs in Scania was estimated to 152,887,000 m3, which corresponded to 590 kg/year. The investigated 21 drugs cover only a small part of many hundred pharmaceuticals that are in use in Sweden. Thus, most likely, one or several tons of pharmaceuticals leak out to the Scanian recipients annually. The analysis of river samples shows that the dilution of wastewater is a key parameter in reducing concentrations. However, some locations have remarkably high concentrations, which occur when the volume wastewater is large in relation to the flow in the river. These kinds of regional results are of importance when selecting where advanced treatment should be prioritized in a first instance, as requested by the Swedish EPA. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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15 pages, 1727 KiB  
Article
Occurrence of Disinfection By-Products in Swimming Pools in the Area of Thessaloniki, Northern Greece. Assessment of Multi-Pathway Exposure and Risk
by Akrivi Sdougkou, Kyriaki Kapsalaki, Argyri Kozari, Ioanna Pantelaki and Dimitra Voutsa
Molecules 2021, 26(24), 7639; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26247639 - 16 Dec 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2049
Abstract
This study investigated the occurrence of disinfection by-products (DBPs) (trihalomethanes (THMs), haloacetic acids (HAAs), halonitriles (HANs), halonitromethane (TCNM) and haloketones (HKs)) in different type of swimming pools in the area of Thessaloniki, northern Greece by employing the EPA methods 551.1 and 552.3. Moreover, [...] Read more.
This study investigated the occurrence of disinfection by-products (DBPs) (trihalomethanes (THMs), haloacetic acids (HAAs), halonitriles (HANs), halonitromethane (TCNM) and haloketones (HKs)) in different type of swimming pools in the area of Thessaloniki, northern Greece by employing the EPA methods 551.1 and 552.3. Moreover, general water quality parameters (pH, residual chlorine, dissolved organic carbon, UV254 absorption, total nitrogen, alkalinity and conductivity) were also measured. The concentrations of DBPs showed great variability among swimming pools as well as within the same pool between sampling campaigns. HAAs exhibited the highest concentrations followed by THMs, HANs, TCNM and HKs. Exposure doses for four age groups (3–<6 y, 6–<11 y, 11–<16 y and adults) were calculated. Route-specific exposures varied among DBPs groups. Inhalation was the dominant exposure route to THMs and TCNM (up to 92–95%). Ingestion and dermal absorption were the main exposure routes to HAAs (40–82% and 18–59%, respectively), depending on the age of swimmers. HANs contributed up to 75% to the calculated cytotoxicity of pool water. Hazard indices for different exposure routes were <1, suggesting non-carcinogenic risk. Inhalation posed the higher carcinogenic risk for THMs, whereas risk via oral and dermal routes was low. Ingestion and dermal contact posed the higher risk for HAAs. Risk management strategies that minimise DBPs exposure without compromising disinfection efficiency in swimming pools are necessary. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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8 pages, 489 KiB  
Article
Multicriteria Decision Analysis and Grouping of Analytical Procedures for Phthalates Determination in Disposable Baby Diapers
by Magdalena Fabjanowicz, Justyna Płotka-Wasylka and Marek Tobiszewski
Molecules 2021, 26(22), 7009; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26227009 - 19 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1409
Abstract
This study presents the application of one of the tools from the multicriteria decision analysis set (MCDA), the Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS). Selected green analytical chemistry metrics were used to rank analytical procedures for the phthalate determination [...] Read more.
This study presents the application of one of the tools from the multicriteria decision analysis set (MCDA), the Technique for Order Preference by Similarity to Ideal Solution (TOPSIS). Selected green analytical chemistry metrics were used to rank analytical procedures for the phthalate determination in disposable baby diapers. Nine analytical procedures were assessed in order to find one that has the lowest environmental impact and the best analytical figures of merit. Nine different criteria, where weighting was based on the experts’ evaluation, were used in the procedures’ assessment. With the use of TOPSIS, an easy and straightforward technique, selection of the most appropriate procedure was made. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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11 pages, 2594 KiB  
Article
Hexosomal Dispersion: A Nano-Based Approach to Boost the Antifungal Potential of Citrus Essential Oils against Plant Fungal Pathogens
by Mohamed S. Sedeek, Abdulaziz M. Al-Mahallawi, Rania A. A. Hussien, Ahmed M. Abdelhaleem Ali, Ibrahim A. Naguib and Mai K. Mansour
Molecules 2021, 26(20), 6284; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26206284 - 17 Oct 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2402
Abstract
The demand for natural fungicides to replace synthetic ones has surged since toxic residues persist in soils, causing environmental contamination and posing a serious threat to worldwide public health. In the context of crop protection and enhancing the efficiency and safety of fungicides, [...] Read more.
The demand for natural fungicides to replace synthetic ones has surged since toxic residues persist in soils, causing environmental contamination and posing a serious threat to worldwide public health. In the context of crop protection and enhancing the efficiency and safety of fungicides, nanotechnology is an eco-friendly strategy in managing fungal pathogens. In the present study, essential oils were isolated from the peels of four citrus fruits (Citrus lemon, Citrus aurantifolia, Citrus maxima, and Citrus sinensis) and were investigated using gas chromatography-mass spectrometric analysis. Monoterpene hydrocarbon was the most predominant group and limonene was the most abundant in the four oils. The antifungal potential of the oils was investigated, and the most active oil (Citrus lemon) was loaded into hexosomal dispersion, and its antifungal potential was retested against the same fungi. The structurally unique nano-based formulation showed great potency for fungal control. To the best of our knowledge, it is the first time the oil of Citrus lemon in nano-hexosomes has been formulated and its fungicidal activity examined. The data collected suggest that citrus essential oils (CEOs), especially when nano-formulated, could be successfully used in integrated fungus management programs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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16 pages, 6873 KiB  
Article
Phyto-Extract-Mediated Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles Using Aqueous Extract of Sanvitalia procumbens, and Characterization, Optimization and Photocatalytic Degradation of Azo Dyes Orange G and Direct Blue-15
by Madeeha Aslam, Fozia Fozia, Anadil Gul, Ijaz Ahmad, Riaz Ullah, Ahmed Bari, Ramzi A. Mothana and Hidayat Hussain
Molecules 2021, 26(20), 6144; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26206144 - 12 Oct 2021
Cited by 30 | Viewed by 2748
Abstract
Green synthesis of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) employing an aqueous plant extract has emerged as a viable eco-friendly method. The aim of the study was to synthesize AgNPs by using plant extract of Sanvitalia procumbens (creeping zinnia) in which the phytochemicals present in plant [...] Read more.
Green synthesis of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) employing an aqueous plant extract has emerged as a viable eco-friendly method. The aim of the study was to synthesize AgNPs by using plant extract of Sanvitalia procumbens (creeping zinnia) in which the phytochemicals present in plant extract act as a stabilizing and reducing agent. For the stability of the synthesized AgNPs, different parameters like AgNO3 concentration, volume ratios of AgNO3, temperature, pH, and contact time were studied. Further, AgNPs were characterized by UV–visible spectroscopy, FT-IR (Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy), XRD (X-ray Diffraction), SEM (Scanning Electron Microscopy), and EDX (Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectrometer) analysis. FT-IR analysis showed that the plant extract contained essential functional groups like O–H stretching of carboxylic acid, N–H stretching of secondary amides, and C–N stretching of aromatic amines, and C–O indicates the vibration of alcohol, ester, and carboxylic acid that facilitated in the green synthesis of AgNPs. The crystalline nature of synthesized AgNPs was confirmed by XRD, while the elemental composition of AgNPs was detected by energy dispersive X-ray analysis (EDX). SEM studies showed the mean particle diameter of silver nanoparticles. The synthesized AgNPs were used for photocatalytic degradation of Orange G and Direct blue-15 (OG and DB-15), which were analyzed by UV-visible spectroscopy. Maximum degradation percentage of OG and DB-15 azo dyes was observed, without any significant silver leaching, thereby signifying notable photocatalytic properties of AgNPs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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14 pages, 1189 KiB  
Article
Automatic On-Line Purge-and-Trap Sequential Injection Analysis for Trace Ammonium Determination in Untreated Estuarine and Seawater Samples
by Athina Dimitriadou and Aristidis Anthemidis
Molecules 2020, 25(7), 1569; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25071569 - 29 Mar 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2629
Abstract
An innovative automatic purge-and-trap (P&T) system coupled with fluorimetric sequential injection (SI), for the on-line separation and preconcentration of volatile compounds, is presented. The truth of concept is demonstrated for the ammonium fluorimetric determination in environmental water samples with complex matrices without any [...] Read more.
An innovative automatic purge-and-trap (P&T) system coupled with fluorimetric sequential injection (SI), for the on-line separation and preconcentration of volatile compounds, is presented. The truth of concept is demonstrated for the ammonium fluorimetric determination in environmental water samples with complex matrices without any pretreatment. The P&T flow system comprises a thermostated purge-vessel where ammonium is converted into gaseous ammonia and a trap-vessel for ammonia collection. This configuration results in matrix removal as well as analyte preconcentration, avoiding membrane-associated problems. All the main parameters affecting the efficiency of a P&T system were studied and optimized. The proposed method is characterized by a working range of 2.7–150.0 μg L−1 of NH4+, with a detection and quantification limit of 0.80 and 2.66 μg L−1, respectively, for a 10-mL sample consumption. The accuracy of the method was assessed by recovery assays in seawater, estuarine, and lake water samples as well as by the analysis of standard reference material. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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Review

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18 pages, 2319 KiB  
Review
Review of Fluorescence Spectroscopy in Environmental Quality Applications
by Despoina-Eleni Zacharioudaki, Ioannis Fitilis and Melina Kotti
Molecules 2022, 27(15), 4801; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27154801 - 27 Jul 2022
Cited by 22 | Viewed by 4637
Abstract
Fluorescence spectroscopy is an optical spectroscopic method that has been applied for the assessment of environmental quality extensively during the last 20 years. Most of the earlier works have used conventional light sources in spectrofluorometers to assess quality. Many recent works have used [...] Read more.
Fluorescence spectroscopy is an optical spectroscopic method that has been applied for the assessment of environmental quality extensively during the last 20 years. Most of the earlier works have used conventional light sources in spectrofluorometers to assess quality. Many recent works have used laser sources of light for the same purpose. The improvement of the energy sources and of the higher resolution spectrometers has led to a tremendous increase in applications. The motivation for the present review study is the increasing use of laser sources in environmental applications. The review is divided in two parts. The fundamental principles of fluorescence spectroscopy are described in the first part. The environmental applications are described in the second part. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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29 pages, 1069 KiB  
Review
Recent Advances in the Extraction of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons from Environmental Samples
by Natalia Manousi and George A. Zachariadis
Molecules 2020, 25(9), 2182; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25092182 - 7 May 2020
Cited by 51 | Viewed by 7144
Abstract
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) comprise a group of chemical compounds consisting of two or more fused benzene rings. PAHs exhibit hydrophobicity and low water solubility, while some of their members are toxic substances resistant to degradation. Due to their low levels in environmental [...] Read more.
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) comprise a group of chemical compounds consisting of two or more fused benzene rings. PAHs exhibit hydrophobicity and low water solubility, while some of their members are toxic substances resistant to degradation. Due to their low levels in environmental matrices, a preconcentration step is usually required for their determination. Nowadays, there is a wide variety of sample preparation techniques, including micro-extraction techniques (e.g., solid-phase microextraction and liquid phase microextraction) and miniaturized extraction techniques (e.g., dispersive solid-phase extraction, magnetic solid-phase extraction, stir bar sorptive extraction, fabric phase sorptive extraction etc.). Compared to the conventional sample preparation techniques, these novel techniques show some benefits, including reduced organic solvent consumption, while they are time and cost efficient. A plethora of adsorbents, such as metal-organic frameworks, carbon-based materials and molecularly imprinted polymers, have been successfully coupled with a wide variety of extraction techniques. This review focuses on the recent advances in the extraction techniques of PAHs from environmental matrices, utilizing novel sample preparation approaches and adsorbents. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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13 pages, 1049 KiB  
Perspective
Layered Double Hydroxides as Rising-Star Adsorbents for Water Purification: A Brief Discussion
by Brígida Maria Villar da Gama, Rangabhashiyam Selvasembian, Dimitrios A. Giannakoudakis, Konstantinos S. Triantafyllidis, Gordon McKay and Lucas Meili
Molecules 2022, 27(15), 4900; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27154900 - 31 Jul 2022
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 2540
Abstract
Within the frame of this article, briefly but comprehensively, we present the existing knowledge, perspectives, and challenges for the utilization of Layered Double Hydroxides (LDHs) as adsorbents against a plethora of pollutants in aquatic matrixes. The use of LDHs as adsorbents was established [...] Read more.
Within the frame of this article, briefly but comprehensively, we present the existing knowledge, perspectives, and challenges for the utilization of Layered Double Hydroxides (LDHs) as adsorbents against a plethora of pollutants in aquatic matrixes. The use of LDHs as adsorbents was established by considering their significant physicochemical features, including their textural, structural, morphological, and chemical composition, as well as their method of synthesis, followed by their advantages and disadvantages as remediation media. The utilization of LDHs towards the adsorptive removal of dyes, metals, oxyanions, and emerging pollutants is critically reviewed, while all the reported kinds of interactions that gather the removal are collectively presented. Finally, future perspectives on the topic are discussed. It is expected that this discussion will encourage researchers in the area to seek new ideas for the design, development, and applications of novel LDHs-based nanomaterials as selective adsorbents, and hence to further explore the potential of their utilization also for analytic approaches to detect and monitor various pollutants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Analytical Aspects in Environmental Pollution Monitoring)
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