Photocatalytic destruction of organic compounds in water is investigated using tanning lamps and fixed-bed photoreactors. Platinized titanium dioxide (Pt-TiO2) supported on silica gel is used as a photocatalyst. Complete mineralization of influent concentrations of 4.98 mg/L tetrachloroethylene and 2.35 mg/L p-dichlorobenzene requires a reactor residence time less than 1.3 minutes. While for influent concentrations of 3.58 mg/L 2-chlorobiphenyl, 2.50 mg/L methyl ethyl ketone and 0.49 mg/L carbon tetrachloride, complete mineralization requires reactor residence times of 1.6, 10.5, and 16.8, minutes, respectively. A reactor model is developed using Langmuir-Hinshelwood kinetics and the model parameters are determined using a reference compound, trichloroethylene. Based on the results of experiments with trichloroethylene, the model predicts the mineralization of the aforementioned compounds from ultraviolet (UV) irradiance, influent concentration, hydroxyl radical rate constants, and the known physical properties of the compounds. The model is also able to predict organic destruction using solar insolation (which has a different spectral distribution from the tanning lamps) based on the UV absorption characteristics of titanium dioxide.

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