Thermodynamic Constraints on the Catalytic Reduction of Nitrates in Drinking Water

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Title: Thermodynamic Constraints on the Catalytic Reduction of Nitrates in Drinking Water
Authors: Fernandez-Torres, Maria J. | Hildebrandt, Diane | Glasser, David | Sempuga, Baraka Celestin
Research Group/s: Computer Optimization of Chemical Engineering Processes and Technologies (CONCEPT)
Center, Department or Service: Universidad de Alicante. Departamento de Ingeniería Química
Keywords: Thermodynamic constraints | Catalytic reduction | Nitrates | Drinking water
Issue Date: 13-Mar-2023
Publisher: American Chemical Society
Citation: Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research. 2023, 62(12): 5305-5314.
Abstract: High nitrate levels in groundwater must be reduced as per legal guidelines to ensure that water is suitable for human consumption. Techniques such as ion exchange, reverse osmosis, electrodialysis, and biological denitrification have proven to be successful on an industrial scale. Unfortunately, the catalytic reduction of nitrate to nitrogen with hydrogen has not been commercialized despite 30 years of research. The main problem is that the reduction produces nitrite and ammonium byproducts above the permitted legal levels, making water unsuitable for human consumption. This research postulates that thermodynamics, rather than kinetics, limits achieving the desired selectivity. We use a thermodynamic approach, known as the attainable region, to compare the theoretical analysis to the experimental data. The graphical results show why it is so difficult to avoid the production of byproducts.
Sponsor: M.J. Fernandez-Torres acknowledges financial support to the Spanish “Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación” under project PID2021-124139NB-C21 and thanks the visiting researcher program, at the University of South Africa, for financial support.
ISSN: 0888-5885 (Print) | 1520-5045 (Online)
DOI: 10.1021/acs.iecr.2c03887
Language: eng
Type: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Rights: © 2023 The Authors. Published by American Chemical Society. Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0)
Peer Review: si
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Appears in Collections:INV - CONCEPT - Artículos de Revistas

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