Electrochemical oxidation of several chlorophenols on diamond electrodes Part I. Reaction mechanism

Cañizares, P.; García-Gómez, J.; Sáez, C.; Rodrigo, M.A.
October 2003
Journal of Applied Electrochemistry;Oct2003, Vol. 33 Issue 10, p917
Academic Journal
The electrochemical oxidation of 4-chlorophenol, 2,4-dichlorophenol and 2,4,6-trichlorophenol aqueous wastes using boron-doped diamond electrodes was studied. This treatment led to complete mineralization of the wastes regardless of the operating conditions. A simple mechanistic model is consistent with the voltammetric and electrolysis results. According to this model, the electrochemical treatment of chlorophenol aqueous wastes involves the anodic and cathodic release of chlorine followed by the formation of non-chlorinated aromatic intermediates. Subsequent cleavage of the aromatic ring gives rise to non-chlorinated carboxylic acids. Chlorine atoms arising from the hydrodehalogenation of the chlorophenols are converted into more oxidized molecules at the anode. These molecules react with unsaturated C4 carboxylic acid to finally yield trichloroacetic acid through a haloform reaction. The non-chlorinated organic acids are ultimately oxidized to carbon dioxide and the trichloroacetic acid into carbon dioxide and volatile organo-chlorinated molecules. Both direct and mediated electrochemical oxidation processes are involved in the electrochemical treatment of chlorophenols.


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