Investigation of the inhibitory effect of silica on the degradation of 1,1,1-trichloroethane by granular iron

Although iron-based permeable reactive barriers are gaining importance for treating groundwater contaminants, little is currently known about the effect of cosolutes on barrier longevity. Because of their corrosion inhibiting properties, dissolved silica species are of particular concern. This research investigates the effect of silica on the reduction of 1,1,1-trichloroethane by granular iron as a function of added silica concentration, pH, and duration of iron exposure to dissolved silica. Batch studies reveal that, at pH 8.5 and above, added silica concentrations as low as 0.17 mM cause a 30% reduction in the reactivity of iron. At higher silica concentrations, reactivity decreases by 65-75%. The inhibitory effect is greater at higher pH: 0.83 mM silica has no apparent adverse effect at pH 7.5, but leads to a 46% decrease in reaction rate at pH 8 and 90% at pH 9. This corresponds to observed trends in silica adsorption onto iron, which is low at pH 7.3 but increases at higher pH. Extending the duration of iron exposure to silica solutions also leads to a more pronounced inhibitory effect. This is in good agreement with the increase in silica coverage on the iron surface as revealed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy.

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Environmental Science and Technology, 37, 24, 5806-5812

Note: The status of this file is: EPFL only

 Record created 2007-09-04, last modified 2018-12-03

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