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Biocatalytic dechlorination of hexachlorocyclohexane by immobilized bio-Pd in a pilot scale fluidized bed reactor

  • Hennebel, Tom
  • Simoen, Henri
  • Verhagen, Pieter
  • De Windt, Wim
  • Dick, Jan
  • Weise, Christian
  • Pietschner, Frank
  • Boon, Nico
  • Verstraete, Willy
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2011
Ghent University Institutional Archive
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Lindane (gamma-hexachlorocyclohexane, gamma-HCH) is a recalcitrant and toxic organochlorine insecticide. Due to its non-selective production process and widespread use, HCH isomers and their degradation products have been detected frequently in soils and groundwater. An innovative technology using microbial produced Pd(0) nanoparticles, i.e. bio-Pd, was developed to treat groundwater containing a mixture of HCHs and chlorobenzenes. In a first step, the groundwater was de-ironized and most of the chlorobenzenes were removed in a biological trickling filter. The mu g L(-1) levels of HCHs and chlorobenzenes were removed in a second step by the bio-Pd-based technology. Therefore, a 200-L pilot scale reactor was developed with 100 mg L(-1) bio-Pd encapsulated in alginate beads. Hydrogen gas was bubbled at the bottom of the reactor and served to charge the bio-Pd catalyst. The reactor influent contained 5.2 mu g L(-1) HCHs and 51.1 mu g L(-1) chlorobenzenes. During a test period of 10 days, 29% of the HCH isomers and 63% of the chlorobenzenes were removed applying a nominal hydraulic residence time of 4 h. These removal percentages could be increased to 75 and 68% by doubling the nominal hydraulic residence time to 8 h. This study demonstrated that biologically produced nanoparticles of Pd can be applied for the large-scale remediation of groundwater contaminated with HCHs.

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