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New Trends of Functional Materials for Wastewater Treatment Applications

A special issue of Materials (ISSN 1996-1944). This special issue belongs to the section "Catalytic Materials".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 April 2024) | Viewed by 17721

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Guest Editor
Faculty of Science and Engineering, Waseda University, 3-4-1 Okubo, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 169-8555, Japan
Interests: mineral processing; recycling; wastewater treatment; separation; powder simulation; geochemical modeling
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Guest Editor
College of Resources, Environment and Materials, Guangxi University, Nanning 530004, China
Interests: mineral processing; recycling; wastewater treatment; nanomaterials; magnetic fluid; environmental cleaning

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Wastewater contains inorganic ions, dissolved organic molecules, fine-to-large particles, and microorganisms, and is treated by various methods, from basic to actual treatment, considering cost. In regards to this area of research, we would like to discuss the potential of treating wastewater using functional materials and a combination of various other treatment methods and systems. For example, the following functional materials could be used for this purpose: membrane, inorganic (organic) layered material, organic polymer, modified bio sorbent, fouling prevention material, aerobatic or anaerobiotic materials, magnetic material, photochemical material, new ion exchange material, radical production material, catalyst, new solvent extraction material, ion liquid utilization, desalination system, and so on.

In addition, the following combinations of wastewater treatment methods with functional materials are considered: aerobic and anaerobic treatment, oxidation, reduction, precipitation, coagulation, stabilization, sorption, solvent extraction, bioremediation, microbial utilization, bacteria leaching, electric and magnetic field utilization, centrifugation, filtration, reverse osmosis, utilization of wastes, radioactive material treatment, recycling, and so on.

As the example mentioned above, many kinds of papers that describe the use of new materials are welcome.

Prof. Dr. Chiharu Tokoro
Prof. Dr. Toyohisa Fujita
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • waste water
  • functional material
  • membrane
  • layered material
  • polymer
  • sorbent
  • photochemical
  • ion exchange
  • radical

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Research

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8 pages, 1369 KiB  
Article
Separation of Adjacent Light Rare Earth Elements Using Silica Gel Modified with Diglycolamic Acid
by Takeshi Ogata and Hirokazu Narita
Materials 2024, 17(11), 2648; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma17112648 - 30 May 2024
Viewed by 174
Abstract
The separation of adjacent rare earth elements (REEs) is a challenging issue due to their chemical similarity. We have investigated the separation of adjacent REEs using four types of adsorbents consisting of silica gel modified with diglycolamic acid with different functional groups at [...] Read more.
The separation of adjacent rare earth elements (REEs) is a challenging issue due to their chemical similarity. We have investigated the separation of adjacent REEs using four types of adsorbents consisting of silica gel modified with diglycolamic acid with different functional groups at the amide position. For all the adsorbents, the adsorption ratio of REEs increased with the increase in atomic number from La to Sm and then became constant for heavy REEs. Among them, EDASiDGA, an adsorbent containing secondary and tertiary amides, showed a high separation factor for Nd/Pr of 2.8. The EDASiDGA-packed column was tested for individual recovery of Pr, Nd, and Sm. After the adsorption of these REEs from 0.10 M HCl, desorption tests were performed with 0.32 and 1.0 M HCl. As a result, Pr and Nd were eluted separately with 0.32 M HCl, and Sm was recovered with 1.0 M HCl. Since the EDASiDGA-packed column showed excellent separation of Pr/Nd/Sm without any chelating agent, it is promising for practical use. Full article
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13 pages, 1324 KiB  
Article
Advancing in Cesium Retention: Application of Magnesium Phosphate Cement Composites
by Sana Gharsallah, Nawel Khitouni, Abdulrahman Mallah, Abdulrahman Alsawi, Abdullah H. Alluhayb, Mohamed Khitouni, Clarence Charnay and Mahmoud Chemingui
Materials 2024, 17(9), 2132; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma17092132 - 1 May 2024
Viewed by 811
Abstract
A serious risk that harms the safe use of water and affects aquatic ecosystems is water pollution. This occurs when the water’s natural equilibrium is disrupted by an excessive amount of substances, both naturally occurring and as a byproduct of human activities, that [...] Read more.
A serious risk that harms the safe use of water and affects aquatic ecosystems is water pollution. This occurs when the water’s natural equilibrium is disrupted by an excessive amount of substances, both naturally occurring and as a byproduct of human activities, that have varied degrees of toxicity. Radiation from Cs isotopes, which are common components of radioactive waste and are known for their long half-lives (30 years), which are longer than the natural decay processes, is a major source of contamination. Adsorption is a commonly used technique for reducing this kind of contamination, and zeolite chabazite has been chosen as the best adsorbent for cesium in this particular situation. The purpose of this research is to investigate a composite material based on magnesium phosphate cement (MPC). Magnesium oxide (MgO), potassium dihydrogen phosphate (KH2PO4), and properly selected retarders are used to create the MPC. The optimal conditions for this composite material are investigated through the utilization of X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, BET surface area analysis, and atomic absorption spectroscopy. The principal aim is to enable innovations in the elimination of radioactive waste-contaminated water using effective cesium removal. The most promising results were obtained by using KH2PO4 as an acid, and MgO as a base, and aiming for an M/P ratio of two or four. Furthermore, we chose zeolite chabazite as a crucial component. The best adsorption abilities for Cs were found at Qads = 106.997 mg/g for S2 and Qads = 122.108 mg/g for S1. As a result, zeolite is an eco-friendly material that is a potential usage option, with many benefits, such as low prices, stability, and ease of regeneration and use. Full article
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16 pages, 5069 KiB  
Article
Application of New Filling Material Based on Combined Heat and Power Waste for Sewage Treatment in Constructed Wetlands
by Paweł Malinowski, Wojciech Dąbrowski and Beata Karolinczak
Materials 2024, 17(2), 389; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma17020389 - 12 Jan 2024
Viewed by 582
Abstract
The filling of constructed wetlands (CWs) affects the efficiency of sewage treatment and proper operation. Mineral aggregates are most often used as filling materials. Significant environmental burdens from mineral mining operations justify the search for waste fill. This study aimed to determine the [...] Read more.
The filling of constructed wetlands (CWs) affects the efficiency of sewage treatment and proper operation. Mineral aggregates are most often used as filling materials. Significant environmental burdens from mineral mining operations justify the search for waste fill. This study aimed to determine the possibility of increasing the efficiency of CW by using a Certyd aggregate as a new filling. Certyd is produced in the sintering process of coal ash, a waste from combined heat and power (CHP) plant operation. Comprehensive two-year studies were conducted using two real-scale subsurface vertical flow (SS VF) CWs supplied with domestic sewage. One bed was filled with a Certyd and the other was filled with appropriate fractions of a mineral aggregate. Both beds worked in parallel, and to compare their effectiveness, account seasonality was taken into account. The SS-VF Certyd-filled bed achieved an average efficiency of 88.0% for biological oxygen demand (BOD5), 80.2% for chemical oxygen demand (COD), 80.4% for suspended solids (SSs), 80.2 for ammonia nitrogen (N-NH4), 72.2% for total nitrogen (TN), and 55.3% for total phosphorus (TP), while the gravel-filled bed achieved 84.5%, 77.0%, 86.9%, 74.2%, 69.4%, and 57.8% for the whole research period, respectively. A higher effect of the removed unit load was achieved in the bed filled with Certyd (36.2 g BOD5 m−2 d−1, 50.0 g COD m−2 d−1, 5.88 g SS m−2 d−1, 7.1 g TN m−2 d−1, 7.9 g N-NH4 m−2 d−1, 0.79 g TP m−2 d−1) compared to the gravel-filled bed (34.7 g BOD5 m−2 d−1, 47.0 g COD, 6.35 g SS m−2 d−1, 6.9 g TN m−2 d−1, 7.3 g m−2 d−1 N-NH4, 0.83 g TP m−2 d−1). Full article
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15 pages, 3756 KiB  
Article
Efficient Photocatalytic Luminous Textile for Simulated Real Water Purification: Advancing Economical and Compact Reactors
by Amin Aymen Assadi
Materials 2024, 17(2), 296; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma17020296 - 7 Jan 2024
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 727
Abstract
The growing worldwide problem of wastewater management needs sustainable methods for conserving water supplies while addressing environmental and economic considerations. With the depletion of freshwater supplies, wastewater treatment has become critical. An effective solution is needed to efficiently treat the organic contaminants departing [...] Read more.
The growing worldwide problem of wastewater management needs sustainable methods for conserving water supplies while addressing environmental and economic considerations. With the depletion of freshwater supplies, wastewater treatment has become critical. An effective solution is needed to efficiently treat the organic contaminants departing from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). Photocatalysis appears to be a viable method for eliminating these recalcitrant micropollutants. This study is focused on the degradation of Reactive Black 5 (RB5), a typical contaminant from textile waste, using a photocatalytic method. Titanium dioxide (TiO2) was deposited on a novel luminous fabric and illuminated using a light-emitting diode (LED). The pollutant degrading efficiency was evaluated for two different light sources: (i) a UV lamp as an external light source and (ii) a cold LED. Interestingly, the LED UV source design showed more promising results after thorough testing at various light levels. In fact, we note a 50% increase in mineralization rate when we triple the number of luminous tissues in the same volume of reactor, which showed a clear improvement with an increase in compactness. Full article
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16 pages, 10486 KiB  
Article
Highly Efficient Cd2+ Removal Using Tobermorite with pH Self-Adjustment Ability from Aqueous Solution
by Juan Qin, Sujuan Yuan, Mauricio Córdova-Udaeta, Keishi Oyama and Chiharu Tokoro
Materials 2023, 16(3), 1314; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma16031314 - 3 Feb 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1501
Abstract
Cadmium (Cd), as a type of heavy metal, can increase the incidence of many diseases, even in low concentrations. In this study, tobermorite was hydrothermally synthesized and then applied to adsorb Cd2+ from an aqueous solution. The physicochemical characteristics of the synthesized [...] Read more.
Cadmium (Cd), as a type of heavy metal, can increase the incidence of many diseases, even in low concentrations. In this study, tobermorite was hydrothermally synthesized and then applied to adsorb Cd2+ from an aqueous solution. The physicochemical characteristics of the synthesized tobermorite were detected, and the results indicated that the well-crystallized tobermorite had a lot of mesopores and a large specific surface area of 140.92 m2/g. It acquired a pH self-adjustment ability via spontaneously releasing Ca2+ and OH- into the aqueous solution. The effects of different factors on Cd2+ removal were investigated. For Cd2+, the removal efficiency could reach 99.71% and the maximum adsorption capacity was 39.18 mg/g using tobermorite. The adsorption data was best fitted with the pseudo-second-order kinetic and Langmuir isotherm models. In addition, there was no strict limit on the solution pH in Cd2+ adsorption because the tobermorite could adjust the solution pH to an alkaline atmosphere spontaneously. The efficient removal of Cd2+ using tobermorite was a result of surface complexation and ion exchange. Full article
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12 pages, 1959 KiB  
Article
Geochemical Modeling of Heavy Metal Removal from Acid Mine Drainage in an Ethanol-Supplemented Sulfate-Reducing Column Test
by Keishi Oyama, Kentaro Hayashi, Yusei Masaki, Takaya Hamai, Shigeshi Fuchida, Yutaro Takaya and Chiharu Tokoro
Materials 2023, 16(3), 928; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma16030928 - 18 Jan 2023
Viewed by 1562
Abstract
A passive treatment process using sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) is known to be effective in removing heavy metals from acid mine drainage (AMD), though there has been little discussion of the mechanism involved to date. In this work, a sulfate-reducing column test was carried [...] Read more.
A passive treatment process using sulfate-reducing bacteria (SRB) is known to be effective in removing heavy metals from acid mine drainage (AMD), though there has been little discussion of the mechanism involved to date. In this work, a sulfate-reducing column test was carried out using supplementary ethanol as an electron donor for microorganisms, and the reaction mechanism was examined using geochemical modeling and X-ray absorption fine structure (XAFS) analysis. The results showed that Cu was readily removed from the AMD on the top surface of the column (0–0.2 m), while Zn and Cd depletion was initiated in the middle of the column (0.2–0.4 m), where sulfide formation by SRB became noticeable. Calculations by a developed geochemical model suggested that ethanol decomposition by aerobic microbes contributed to the reduction of Cu, while sulfide produced by SRB was the major cause of Zn and Cd removal. XAFS analysis of column residue detected ZnS, ZnSO4 (ZnS oxidized by atmospheric exposure during the drying process), and CuCO3, thus confirming the validity of the developed geochemical model. Based on these results, the application of the constructed geochemical model to AMD treatment with SRB could be a useful approach in predicting the behavior of heavy metal removal. Full article
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21 pages, 3819 KiB  
Article
An Evaluation of Pumping Stations for Pressure Sewers System Made from Concrete Coils, Polymer Concrete, and High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
by Tomasz Sionkowski, Wiktor Halecki and Krzysztof Chmielowski
Materials 2023, 16(2), 524; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma16020524 - 5 Jan 2023
Viewed by 1750
Abstract
A deficiency in accurate and current regulations, along with a lack of experience in sanitary construction, makes the installation of sewers challenging. Using models, it was determined that if the pumps were operated simultaneously, the service would last for a long time over [...] Read more.
A deficiency in accurate and current regulations, along with a lack of experience in sanitary construction, makes the installation of sewers challenging. Using models, it was determined that if the pumps were operated simultaneously, the service would last for a long time over the entire sewer system. With a daily sewage inflow of 468 dm3, the system was found to run 14.4–14.7% longer than expected at 100 pumping stations. Each month, the pressure-sensitive sewer system receives more than 51 min of extended service from the city’s central sewer system. Increasing wastewater inflow and the number of pumps decrease centrifugal pump capacity. In the study, the main findings were related to the number of pumps. With 100 centrifugal pumps simultaneously, the pressure-based system was most effective. An increase in operation time of 18.4–19.1% was observed over a period of 30 days and an average sewage inflow of 705 dm3 for each. In place of gravity sewerage, sewerage can be used. Pressure sewer systems should be designed in a way that addresses technical as well as economic concerns. Accordingly, this study indicates that pressure sewerage is a viable alternative to gravity sewerage in villages with scattered drinking water supplies. Full article
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15 pages, 2655 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Magnetic Composites (γ-Al2O3/TiO2/γ-Fe2O3) as Ozone Catalysts in Wastewater Treatment
by Cheng Wang, Guangzhen Zhou, Yanhua Xu and Peng Yu
Materials 2022, 15(23), 8459; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15238459 - 28 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1457
Abstract
Using municipal sewage as a source of reclaimed water is an important way to alleviate the shortage of water resources. At present, advanced oxidation technology (AOPs), represented by ozone oxidation, is widely used in wastewater treatment. In this study, γ-Al2O3 [...] Read more.
Using municipal sewage as a source of reclaimed water is an important way to alleviate the shortage of water resources. At present, advanced oxidation technology (AOPs), represented by ozone oxidation, is widely used in wastewater treatment. In this study, γ-Al2O3, a low-cost traditional ozone catalyst, was selected as the matrix. By modifying magnetic γ-Fe2O3 with a titanate coupling agent, in situ deposition, and calcination, the final formation of a γ-Al2O3/TiO2/γ-Fe2O3 micrometer ozone catalyst was achieved. A variety of material characterization methods were used to demonstrate that the required material was successfully prepared. The catalyst powder particles have strong magnetic properties, form aggregates easily, and have good precipitation and separation properties. Subsequently, ibuprofen was used as the degradation substrate to investigate the ozone catalytic performance of the prepared catalyst, and this proved that it had good ozone catalytic activity. The degradation process was also analyzed. The results showed that in the ozone system, some of the ibuprofen molecules will be oxidized to form 1,4-propanal phenylacetic acid, which is then further oxidized to form 1,4-acetaldehyde benzoic acid and p-phenylacetaldehyde. Finally, the prepared catalyst was applied to the actual wastewater treatment process, and it also had good catalytic performance in this context. GC–MS detection of the water samples after treatment showed that the types of organic matter in the water were significantly reduced, among which nine pollutants with high content, such as bisphenol A and sulfamethoxazole, were not detected after treatment. Full article
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25 pages, 10812 KiB  
Article
Chestnut Shell-Activated Carbon Mixed with Pyrolytic Snail Shells for Methylene Blue Adsorption
by Jiahao An, Nguyen Thi Hong Nhung, Yaxuan Ding, Hao Chen, Chunlin He, Xinpeng Wang and Toyohisa Fujita
Materials 2022, 15(22), 8227; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15228227 - 19 Nov 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1765
Abstract
Activated carbon has been used to treat organic dyes in water systems; however, the adsorption capacity of the samples studied was limited by the specific surface area and influenced by the pH of the aqueous solution. In this study, a hybrid adsorbent consisting [...] Read more.
Activated carbon has been used to treat organic dyes in water systems; however, the adsorption capacity of the samples studied was limited by the specific surface area and influenced by the pH of the aqueous solution. In this study, a hybrid adsorbent consisting of a mixture (MCS) of activated chestnut shell biochar (CN) and pyrolyzed snail shell material (SS) was developed to solve this problem, with the waste snail shell samples being processed by pyrolysis and the chestnut shell samples chemically pretreated and then pyrolyzed. The BET and SEM results revealed that the SS had a mesoporous fluffy structure with a higher specific surface (1705 m2/g) and an average pore diameter of about 4.07 nm, providing a large number of sites for adsorption. In addition, XPS and FTIR results showed that the main component of SS was calcium oxide, and it also contained a certain amount of calcium carbonate, which not only provided an alkaline environment for the adsorption of biochar but also degradation and photocatalytic capabilities. The results showed that the MCS3-1 sample, obtained when CN and SS were mixed in the ratio of 3:1, had good capacity for adsorption for methylene blue (MB), with 1145 mg/g at an initial concentration of 1300 mg/L (92% removal rate). The adsorption behaviors were fitted with the pseudo-second-order kinetic model and Freundlich isotherm model, which indicated that the adsorption was multilayer chemisorption with a saturated adsorption capacity of 1635 mg/g. The photocatalytic capacity from the SS composition was about 89 mg/g, and the sorption of MB dye onto the sorbent reached equilibrium after 300 min. The results suggested that MCS3-1 has enormous potential for removing MB from wastewater. Full article
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16 pages, 5622 KiB  
Article
Efficient Activation of Peroxymonosulfate by Cobalt Supported Used Resin Based Carbon Ball Catalyst for the Degradation of Ibuprofen
by Guangzhen Zhou, Yanhua Xu, Xiao Zhang, Yongjun Sun, Cheng Wang and Peng Yu
Materials 2022, 15(14), 5003; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma15145003 - 18 Jul 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1867
Abstract
The extensive use of ibuprofen (IBU) and other pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) causes them widely to exist in nature and be frequently detected in water bodies. Advanced catalytic oxidation processes (AOPs) are often used as an efficient way to degrade them, [...] Read more.
The extensive use of ibuprofen (IBU) and other pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) causes them widely to exist in nature and be frequently detected in water bodies. Advanced catalytic oxidation processes (AOPs) are often used as an efficient way to degrade them, and the research on heterogeneous catalysts has become a hot spot in the field of AOPs. Among transitional metal-based catalysts, metal cobalt has been proved to be an effective element in activating peroxymonosulfate (PMS) to produce strong oxidizing components. In this study, the used D001 resin served as the matrix material and through simple impregnation and calcination, cobalt was successfully fixed on the carbon ball in the form of cobalt sulfide. When the catalyst was used to activate persulfate to degrade IBU, it was found that under certain reaction conditions, the degradation rate in one hour could exceed 70%, which was far higher than that of PMS and resin carbon balls alone. Here, we discussed the effects of catalyst loading, PMS concentration, pH value and temperature on IBU degradation. Through quenching experiments, it was found that SO4 and ·OH played a major role in the degradation process. The material has the advantages of simple preparation, low cost and convenient recovery, as well as realizing the purpose of reuse and degrading organic pollutants efficiently. Full article
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Review

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17 pages, 951 KiB  
Review
A Critical Review of Snail Shell Material Modification for Applications in Wastewater Treatment
by Nguyen Thi Hong Nhung, Vo Dinh Long and Toyohisa Fujita
Materials 2023, 16(3), 1095; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma16031095 - 27 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3602
Abstract
Sea material is becoming increasingly popular and widely used as an adsorbent in wastewater treatment. Snail shell, a low-cost and natural animal waste material, has been shown to have a high calcium content (>99%) and a large potential surface area for the development [...] Read more.
Sea material is becoming increasingly popular and widely used as an adsorbent in wastewater treatment. Snail shell, a low-cost and natural animal waste material, has been shown to have a high calcium content (>99%) and a large potential surface area for the development of sustainable adsorbents. This paper presents a novel synthesis of methods for using snail shell absorbent materials in the treatment of wastewater containing heavy metals, textile dyes, and other organic substances. Modified biochar made from snail shells has gained popularity in recent years due to its numerous benefits. This paper discusses and analyzes modification methods, including impregnating with supplements, combining other adsorbents, synthesis of hydroxyapatite, co-precipitation, and the sol–gel method. The analysis of factors influencing adsorption efficiency revealed that pH, contact time, temperature, initial concentration, and adsorbent dose all have a significant impact on the adsorption process. Future research directions are also discussed in this paper as a result of presenting challenges for current snail adsorbents. Full article
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