New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water

A special issue of Toxics (ISSN 2305-6304). This special issue belongs to the section "Toxicity Reduction and Environmental Remediation".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 March 2022) | Viewed by 28367

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Dipartimento di Chimica e Tecnologie Chimiche, Via P. Bucci, Cubo 12C, Università della Calabria, 87036 Rende, CS, Italy
Interests: sustainable chemistry; environmental chemistry; medicinal chemistry; macromolecules
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Circular Carbon GmbH, Große Elbstrasse 86, 22767 Hamburg, Germany
Interests: biochar; multi-walled carbon nanotubes; composite materials; polymer chemistry; environmental chemistry
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Industrialization is global and the impact on the environment must be monitored and minimized. Water is the most abundant substance on the Earth’s surface and one of the most influenced by contamination. Some of the most common pollutants, like pesticides or dyes, have an ionic character and, for this reason, are easily soluble in water sources. The same is true of heavy metal ions and many others. The contribution of the scientific community to the development of easy technologies to decontaminate water is fundamental because every year tons of contaminants are introduced in our lakes, rivers, seas and oceans.

We are pleased to invite you to contribute to this Special Issue entitled “New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water” with the aim to highlight advances in the field and create an important collection of recent discoveries about environmental chemistry.

This Special Issue is dedicated to original research articles and reviews that focus on the removal of single or multiple harmful pollutants from water. The new technologies employed may include bur are not limited to organic materials of synthetic or natural origins, like polymers, composites, renewable sources or waste. The mechanism of removal may be chemical or physical and the target pollutants can be organic or inorganic. Contaminated samples can include distilled water, freshwater or seawater. Identification and quantification of the target pollutants are recommended.

Below is a non-exhaustive list of potential research areas:

  • chemical processes to decontaminate water samples;
  • physical processes to decontaminate water samples;
  • synthesis or employment of organic materials and their applications for pollutant removal;
  • development or employment of composite materials and their applications for pollutant removal;
  • production or employment of materials derived from renewable sources for pollutant removal;
  • turning waste into sustainable bio-absorbent or bio-adsorbent for pollutants removal;

We look forward to receiving your contributions.

Dr. Fabrizio Olivito
Dr. Pravin Jagdale
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Toxics is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • organic pollutants
  • inorganic pollutants
  • decontamination
  • environmental chemistry
  • organic materials
  • sustainable materials
  • absorption
  • adsorption
  • identification
  • quantification

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Published Papers (9 papers)

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Editorial

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3 pages, 184 KiB  
Editorial
New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water: A Report about the State of the Art
by Fabrizio Olivito and Pravin Jagdale
Toxics 2022, 10(3), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10030128 - 07 Mar 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1686
Abstract
The growing increase in the world population was accompanied by a massive development of industrialization [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)

Research

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9 pages, 1278 KiB  
Communication
Nanoparticled Titanium Dioxide to Remediate Crude Oil Exposure. An In Vivo Approach in Dicentrarchus labrax
by Patrizia Guidi, Margherita Bernardeschi, Vittoria Scarcelli, Paolo Lucchesi, Mara Palumbo, Ilaria Corsi and Giada Frenzilli
Toxics 2022, 10(3), 111; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10030111 - 26 Feb 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2201
Abstract
The contamination of marine water bodies with petroleum hydrocarbons represents a threat to ecosystems and human health. In addition to the surface slick of crude oil, the water-soluble fraction of petroleum is responsible for the induction of severe toxic effects at different cellular [...] Read more.
The contamination of marine water bodies with petroleum hydrocarbons represents a threat to ecosystems and human health. In addition to the surface slick of crude oil, the water-soluble fraction of petroleum is responsible for the induction of severe toxic effects at different cellular and molecular levels. Some petroleum-derived hydrocarbons are classified as carcinogenic and mutagenic contaminants; therefore, the oil spill into the marine environment can have long term consequences to the biota. Therefore, new tools able to remediate crude oil water accommodation fraction pollution in marine water are highly recommended. Nanomaterials were recently proposed in environmental remediation processes. In the present in vivo study, the efficacy of pure anatase titanium nanoparticles (n-TiO2) was tested on Dicentrarchus labrax exposed to the accommodated fraction of crude oil. It was found that n-TiO2 nano-powders themselves were harmless in terms of DNA primary damage, and the capability of pure anatase n-TiO2 to lower the levels of DNA damage induced by a mixture of genotoxic pollutant was revealed. These preliminary results on a laboratory scale are the prerequisite for deepening this new technology for the abatement of the cellular effects related with oil spill pollutants released in marine environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)
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14 pages, 2968 KiB  
Article
Removal of Polystyrene Microplastics from Aqueous Solution Using the Metal–Organic Framework Material of ZIF-67
by Hongyou Wan, Junkai Wang, Xiaoyu Sheng, Jingwei Yan, Wei Zhang and Ying Xu
Toxics 2022, 10(2), 70; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10020070 - 04 Feb 2022
Cited by 54 | Viewed by 5128
Abstract
Due to the continuous and adverse effects of microplastics on the environment, an increasing number of studies have begun to focus on their migration patterns and removal from aquatic environments. Herein, our study innovatively evaluated the ability of the capacity of ZIF-67, a [...] Read more.
Due to the continuous and adverse effects of microplastics on the environment, an increasing number of studies have begun to focus on their migration patterns and removal from aquatic environments. Herein, our study innovatively evaluated the ability of the capacity of ZIF-67, a novel metal–organic framework (MOF) material, to adsorb polystyrene (PS) microplastics (MPs) from aqueous solutions, aiming to explore the potential of MOF materials to remove MPs from wastewater. The adsorption ratio of PSMPs (5 mg/L, 30 mL) by ZIF-67 reached up to 92.1%, and the PSMP adsorption equilibrium was achieved within 20 min at 298 K. The adsorption of PSMPs would be favored at a pH of 8, a PSMPs solution concentration of 5 mg/L, and a temperature of 298 K. Further analyses demonstrated that hydrogen bond interactions, π-π stacking, and electrostatic interactions played a crucial role in the adsorption of PSMPs by ZIF-67 in aqueous solutions. Our findings thus provide insight into novel methods to remove MPs from acidic and weakly alkaline aquatic environments and wastewater. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)
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12 pages, 2406 KiB  
Article
Evaluation of the Bioelectrochemical Approach and Different Electron Donors for Biological Trichloroethylene Reductive Dechlorination
by Edoardo Dell’Armi, Marta Maria Rossi, Lucia Taverna, Marco Petrangeli Papini and Marco Zeppilli
Toxics 2022, 10(1), 37; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics10010037 - 13 Jan 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2367
Abstract
Trichloroethylene (TCE) and more in general chlorinated aliphatic hydrocarbons (CAHs) can be removed from a contaminated matrix thanks to microorganisms able to perform the reductive dechlorination reaction (RD). Due to the lack of electron donors in the contaminated matrix, CAHs’ reductive dechlorination can [...] Read more.
Trichloroethylene (TCE) and more in general chlorinated aliphatic hydrocarbons (CAHs) can be removed from a contaminated matrix thanks to microorganisms able to perform the reductive dechlorination reaction (RD). Due to the lack of electron donors in the contaminated matrix, CAHs’ reductive dechlorination can be stimulated by fermentable organic substrates, which slowly release molecular hydrogen through their fermentation. In this paper, three different electron donors constituted by lactate, hydrogen, and a biocathode of a bioelectrochemical cell have been studied in TCE dechlorination batch experiments. The batch reactors evaluated in terms of reductive dechlorination rate and utilization efficiency of the electron donor reported that the bio-electrochemical system (BES) showed a lower RD rate with respect of lactate reactor (51 ± 9 µeq/d compared to 98 ± 4 µeq/d), while the direct utilization of molecular hydrogen gave a significantly lower RD rate (19 ± 8 µeq/d), due to hydrogen low solubility in liquid media. The study also gives a comparative evaluation of the different electron donors showing the capability of the bioelectrochemical system to reach comparable efficiencies with a fermentable substrate without the use of other chemicals, 10.7 ± 3.3% for BES with respect of 3.5 ± 0.2% for the lactate-fed batch reactor. This study shows the BES capability of being an alternative at classic remediation approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)
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19 pages, 4550 KiB  
Article
Application of ZnO-Nd Nano-Photocatalyst for the Reactive Red 198 Dye Decolorization in the Falling-Film Photocatalytic Reactor
by Fatemeh Biglar, Amirreza Talaiekhozani, Farham Aminsharei, Junboum Park, Anahita Barghi and Shahabaldin Rezania
Toxics 2021, 9(10), 254; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics9100254 - 08 Oct 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1841
Abstract
A large amount of Reactive red 198 (RR198) is released yearly into the environment. RR198 is toxic for human and aquatic creatures; therefore, it should be removed from wastewater before releasing into the environment. In this study, the nano ZnO-Nd -photo-catalyst for the [...] Read more.
A large amount of Reactive red 198 (RR198) is released yearly into the environment. RR198 is toxic for human and aquatic creatures; therefore, it should be removed from wastewater before releasing into the environment. In this study, the nano ZnO-Nd -photo-catalyst for the first time was synthesized by the combustion method. First, the physical characteristics of the generated nano photocatalyst were evaluated using FESEM, XRD, Bandgap calculation, and FTIR analysis. Then, the ZnO-Nd nano-photocatalyst was suspended into the contaminated water with RR198 dye in a falling-film photocatalytic reactor. The effects of parameters such as the amount of H2O2, catalyst dose, pH, and initial concentration of dye were investigated during the experiments. Finally, the decolorization process with the falling-film photocatalytic reactor was optimized using response surface methodology (RSM). The physical characteristics showed that the average particle size of the synthesized ZnO-Nd was 40 nm. Doping ZnO with Nd reduced the photocatalyst energy bandgap by 14%. The results indicated that the optimum amount of catalyst dose and pH level was 0.1 g/L and 5, respectively. The simultaneous usage of H2O2 and ZnO-Nd with an H2O2/dye ratio of two increased dye removal performance by 90%. The results demonstrated that the developed equations can be applied to predict the performance of the falling-film photoreactor. This study showed that using the nano ZnO-Nd photocatalyst in a falling-film photocatalytic reactor under optimum operating conditions is an appropriate way to remove RR198 from water. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)
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17 pages, 4297 KiB  
Article
Efficient and Fast Removal of Oils from Water Surfaces via Highly Oleophilic Polyurethane Composites
by Antonio De Nino, Fabrizio Olivito, Vincenzo Algieri, Paola Costanzo, Antonio Jiritano, Matteo Antonio Tallarida and Loredana Maiuolo
Toxics 2021, 9(8), 186; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics9080186 - 05 Aug 2021
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 3231
Abstract
In this study we evaluated the oil adsorption capacity of an aliphatic polyurethane foam (PU 1) and two of its composites, produced through surface coating using microparticles of silica (PU-Si 2) and activated carbon (PU-ac 3). The oil adsorption capacity [...] Read more.
In this study we evaluated the oil adsorption capacity of an aliphatic polyurethane foam (PU 1) and two of its composites, produced through surface coating using microparticles of silica (PU-Si 2) and activated carbon (PU-ac 3). The oil adsorption capacity in diesel was improved up to 36% using the composite with silica and up to 50% using the composite with activated carbon with respect to the initial PU 1. Excellent performances were retained in gasoline and motor oil. The adsorption was complete after a few seconds. The process follows a monolayer adsorption fitted by the Langmuir isotherm, with a maximum adsorption capacity of 29.50 g/g of diesel for the composite with activated carbon (PU-ac 3). These materials were proved to be highly oleophilic for oil removal from fresh water and sea water samples. Regeneration and reuse can be repeated up to 50 times by centrifugation, without a significant loss in adsorption capacity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)
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16 pages, 4097 KiB  
Article
Defective Bismuth Oxide as Effective Adsorbent for Arsenic Removal from Water and Wastewater
by Ramona Balint, Mattia Bartoli, Pravin Jagdale, Alberto Tagliaferro, Abdul Samad Memon, Massimo Rovere and Maria Martin
Toxics 2021, 9(7), 158; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics9070158 - 02 Jul 2021
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 2549
Abstract
In this work, we report solid-state synthetized defective Bi2O3 containing Bi(V) sites as effective and recyclable arsenic adsorbent materials. Bi2O3 was extensively characterized, and structure-related adsorption processes are reported. Both As(V) and As(III) species-adsorption processes were investigated [...] Read more.
In this work, we report solid-state synthetized defective Bi2O3 containing Bi(V) sites as effective and recyclable arsenic adsorbent materials. Bi2O3 was extensively characterized, and structure-related adsorption processes are reported. Both As(V) and As(III) species-adsorption processes were investigated in a wide range of concentrations, pH values, and times. The effect of several competing ions was also tested together with the adsorbent recyclability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)
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13 pages, 2977 KiB  
Article
The Potential for PE Microplastics to Affect the Removal of Carbamazepine Medical Pollutants from Aqueous Environments by Multiwalled Carbon Nanotubes
by Xiaoyu Sheng, Junkai Wang, Wei Zhang and Qiting Zuo
Toxics 2021, 9(6), 139; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics9060139 - 12 Jun 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2772
Abstract
Microplastics are ubiquitous in aquatic environments and interact with other kinds of pollutants, which affects the migration, transformation, and fate of those other pollutants. In this study, we employ carbamazepine (CBZ) as the contaminant to study the influence of polyethylene (PE) microplastics on [...] Read more.
Microplastics are ubiquitous in aquatic environments and interact with other kinds of pollutants, which affects the migration, transformation, and fate of those other pollutants. In this study, we employ carbamazepine (CBZ) as the contaminant to study the influence of polyethylene (PE) microplastics on the adsorption of CBZ pollutants by multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MCNTs) in aqueous solution. The adsorption capacity of CBZ by MCNTs in the presence of PE microplastics was obviously lower than that by MCNTs alone. The influencing factors, including the dose of microplastics, pH, and CBZ solution concentration, on the adsorption of CBZ by MCNTs and MCNTs−PE were thoroughly investigated. The adsorption rate of CBZ by MCNTs decreased from 97.4% to 90.6% as the PE microplastics dose increased from 2 g/L to 20 g/L. This decrease occurred because the MCNTs were coated on the surface of the PE microplastics, which further decreased the effective adsorption area of the MCNTs. This research provides a framework for revealing the effect of microplastics on the adsorption of pollutants by carbon materials in aqueous environments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)
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Review

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20 pages, 4829 KiB  
Review
Biochar-Supported TiO2-Based Nanocomposites for the Photocatalytic Degradation of Sulfamethoxazole in Water—A Review
by Subhash Chandra, Pravin Jagdale, Isha Medha, Ashwani Kumar Tiwari, Mattia Bartoli, Antonio De Nino and Fabrizio Olivito
Toxics 2021, 9(11), 313; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxics9110313 - 18 Nov 2021
Cited by 26 | Viewed by 4917
Abstract
Sulfamethoxazole (SMX) is a frequently used antibiotic for the treatment of urinary tract, respiratory, and intestinal infections and as a supplement in livestock or fishery farming to boost production. The release of SMX into the environment can lead to the development of antibiotic [...] Read more.
Sulfamethoxazole (SMX) is a frequently used antibiotic for the treatment of urinary tract, respiratory, and intestinal infections and as a supplement in livestock or fishery farming to boost production. The release of SMX into the environment can lead to the development of antibiotic resistance among the microbial community, which can lead to frequent clinical infections. SMX removal from water is usually done through advanced treatment processes, such as adsorption, photocatalytic oxidation, and biodegradation. Among them, the advanced oxidation process using TiO2 and its composites is being widely used. TiO2 is a widely used photocatalyst; however, it has certain limitations, such as low visible light response and quick recombination of e/h+ pairs. Integrating the biochar with TiO2 nanoparticles can overcome such limitations. The biochar-supported TiO2 composites showed a significant increase in the photocatalytic activities in the UV-visible range, which resulted in a substantial increase in the degradation of SMX in water. The present review has critically reviewed the methods of biochar TiO2 composite synthesis, the effect of biochar integration with the TiO2 on its physicochemical properties, and the chemical pathways through which the biochar/TiO2 composite degrades the SMX in water or aqueous solution. The degradation of SMX using photocatalysis can be considered a useful model, and the research studies presented in this review will allow extending this area of research on other types of similar pharmaceuticals or pollutants in general in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue New Technologies to Decontaminate Pollutants in Water)
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