Activated Persulfate Treatment of 1,4-Dioxane in the Presence of Chlorinated Solvent Co-contaminants

Thursday, 18 December 2014: 4:30 PM
Dylan Edward Hartup Eberle1, Thomas T Boving1 and Raymond Ball2, (1)University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI, United States, (2)EnChem Engineering Inc., Newton, MA, United States
1,4-dioxane is an emerging groundwater contaminant and a likely human carcinogen. Due to its history as a stabilizer in chlorinated solvents, 1,4-dioxane is often found as a co-contaminant at solvent releases sites such as landfills, solvent recycling facilities, vapor decreasing operations, and fire-training areas. Historically, 1,4-dioxane was not routinely analyzed for at solvent release sites. The lack of analyses and the limitations of the analyses that were performed (i.e. high reporting limits) means that the scale of 1,4-dioxane subsurface contamination is still emerging. With the number of known 1,4-dioxane sites increasing, the need for cost effective 1,4-dioxane remediation technologies is rising as well. Remediation strategies that are capable of treating both 1,4-dioxane as well as chlorinated co-contaminants are of particular importance, especially when treating mixed-waste source zones.

In the present study, we examined the fate of 1,4-dioxane during the targeted remediation of aqueous phase volatile organic compounds (VOC) using an activated persulfate based ISCO method (OxyZone®). Bench scale laboratory experiments are used to evaluate the treatability of 1,4-dioxane both as a single compound and in the presence of trichloroethene (TCE) and 1,1,1-trichloroethane (1,1,1-TCA). Possible dependencies on oxidant concentration and reaction kinetics were studied. Preliminary results are promising and show that OxyZone® is persistent and long lived, with oxidation of 1,4-dioxane continuing more than 12 days after initial dosage, even at dilute oxidant concentrations. The oxidative destruction of 1,4-dioxane, TCE and 1,1,1-TCA in single compound batch systems followed pseudo first order reaction kinetics. The rate of oxidation for each contaminant increased linearly with increasing persulfate concentration over the range of oxidant concentrations tested. The rate of oxidative destruction, from most easily degraded to least was: TCE > 1,4-Dioxane > 1,1,1-TCA. Experiments examining the destruction of 1,4-dioxane in the presence of TCE and 1,1,1-TCA are ongoing. The final results of this study will be presented.