WIT Press

Electrochemical Treatment Of Aqueous Phenol Wastes: A Preliminary Economical Outlook


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WIT Press


A de Lucas, P Cañizares, M A Rodrigo & J García-Gómez


Although the application of electrochemical technology to waste treatment has been widely studied in bench and pilot plant during the recent years, technicians still believe that its cost is higher that the resulting of applying other treatment technologies. In this paper a preliminary economical outlook of the use of the electrochemical process for waste treatment and a comparison with other waste treatment technologies is carried out. As a result of this study it has been concluded that for small flowrates of phenolic wastewater, treatment costs are in the range 6- 35 lm3 for bio-oxidation, 30-80 E/m3 for ozonization and 18-30 E/m3 for the electro-oxidation process. 1 Introduction In recent years the use of direct [1][2] and mediated [3] electrochemical oxidation for the destruction of the organics contained in industrial wastes has been tried on both pilot and industrial plant scale. Electrochemical technology has been proved to be able to treat successfully these wastes but, although there is a considerable lack of information about economical evaluation and comparison with other technologies, technicians still refuse electrochemical treatments because of its supposed high operating cost. More research has been undertaken with the aim of gaining a better insight into this process and, consequently, to develop a less expensive application. As conclusions of this research, it has been determined that the electrochemical treatment of organic wastewaters, and hence its cost, depends on several factors, including anode material, waste characteristics and oxidation conditions.