Photo- and Electrochemical Water Treatment: For the Removal of Contaminants of Emerging Concern
Chapter 10: Recent Advancement in Carbonaceous Materials for Integrated Adsorption: Photo-degradation of Pharmaceuticals from Wastewater
Published:21 Dec 2022
Special Collection: 2022 ebook collectionSeries: Chemistry in the Environment
Om Prakash, Deepak Panchal, Abhishek Sharma, Purusottam Tripathy, Rita S Dhodapkar, Sukdeb Pal, 2022. "Recent Advancement in Carbonaceous Materials for Integrated Adsorption: Photo-degradation of Pharmaceuticals from Wastewater", Photo- and Electrochemical Water Treatment: For the Removal of Contaminants of Emerging Concern, Halan Prakash, Rita S Dhodapkar, Kevin McGuigan
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Over the last few decades, pharmaceuticals have emerged as environmental contaminants of emerging concern (CECs). Due to their high degree of stability, recalcitrant and persistent nature, these pharmaceuticals and their active metabolites are difficult to remove using conventional wastewater-treatment systems. Although adsorption has gained huge interest among several water-treatment technologies, its applicability is generally impeded by exhausted adsorption sites and its energy-intensive regeneration. On the other hand, photo-catalysis is meticulously researched for removal of contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) because of high efficacy and possible scalability. However, advancement of an integrated approach of adsorption–photo-catalysis has received substantial attention as an emerging water-treatment technology for effective removal or mineralisation of pharmaceuticals. Carbon (C)-based composites render very high surface area, high surface to volume ratio and functional active sites that enhance selectivity and sensitivity as well as high adsorption–regeneration capacity of adsorbents. These composites also stimulate red-shift absorption that contributes to more effective charge separation. This fosters the generation of reactive oxygen species leading to complete mineralisation of adsorbed pharmaceuticals. The objective of this chapter is to focus on the advancements in carbonaceous materials that are widely used both as adsorbents as well as photo-catalysts because of their high stability, low toxicity and cost effectiveness. The mechanism, key factors and performance of various carbonaceous adsorbent-photo-catalysts and their derivatives for the adsorption–photo-degradation of pharmaceuticals are reviewed. The challenges and limitations of such materials for their wide applicability in water treatment plants to minimise the environmental release of pharmaceuticals are also discussed.