TiO(2) Photocatalytic Degradation of Phenylarsonic Acid

J Photochem Photobiol A Chem. 2010 Feb 5;210(1):61-68. doi: 10.1016/j.jphotochem.2009.12.004.


Phenyl substituted arsenic compounds are widely used as feed additives in the poultry industry and have become a serious environmental concern. We have demonstrated that phenylarsonic acid (PA) is readily degraded by TiO(2) photocatalysis. Application of the Langmuir-Hinshelwood kinetic model for the initial stages of the TiO(2) photocatalysis of PA yields an apparent rate constant (k(r)) of 2.8 µmol/L·min and the pseudo-equilibrium constant (K) for PA is 34 L/mmol. The pH of the solution influences the adsorption and photocatalytic degradation of PA due to the surface charge of TiO(2) photocatalyst and speciation of PA. Phenol, catechol and hydroquinone are observed as the predominant products during the degradation. The roles of reactive oxygen species, •OH, (1)O(2), O(2) (-•) and h(VB) (+) were probed by adding appropriate scavengers to the reaction medium and the results suggest that •OH plays a major role in the degradation of PA. By-products studies indicate the surface of the catalyst plays a key role in the formation of the primary products and the subsequent oxidation pathways leading to the mineralization to inorganic arsenic. TiO(2) photocatalysis results in the rapid destruction of PA and may be attractive for the remediation of a variety of organoarsenic compounds.