Final Thesis

Engineering of Porosity to Maximize Adsorption Capacity

Key Info

Basic Information

Unit:
Chemical Process Engineering
Type:
Masterthesis / Bachelorthesis
Focus/Key Topic:
experimental
Date:
From Now

Contact

Modern Electro-Fenton (EF) process, where hydrogen peroxide is generated by oxygen reduction on a gas diffusion electrode (GDE) and reacts with ferrous ion to produce hydroxyl radical, is recognized today as the most effective, economically feasible and environmentally friendly processes for degradation of organic pollutants.

Cumbersome structure of GDEs is one challenge of modern EF process which plays a crucial role in overall degradation efficiency. All porous carbon materials are suitable for GDEs and especially carbon nanotubes(CNTs) have been reported many times as an effective catalyst for hydrogen peroxide electro-generation. Our group has developed a tubular CNT-made GDE with a simple production process (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.carbon.2013.11.005).

This tubular CNT-made GDEs can be used in a cyclic adsorption/EF process for wastewater treatment. Where pollutants are adsorbed on GDE surface in the first cycle, and then in the second one are degraded by hydroxyl radicals (https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhazmat.2015.12.066). This means that the adsorption process limits the overall efficiency of wastewater treatment. Unlike activated carbons, CNTs are much less efficient in terms of adsorption because of their different porosity structures, especially when the concentration of pollutants is extremely low. Therefore, altering porosity structure and increasing surface area of CNT-made GDEs not only can improve the adsorption capacity; it would increase the rate of hydrogen peroxide generation as well.

This thesis will be focusing on surface and porosity modification of CNT-made GDEs. The thesis comprises the following steps:

  • Fabrication of tubular GDEs with different structures
  • Surface and porosity characterization of synthetized GDEs
  • Developing a relation between fabrication parameters and obtained structural features
  • Testing modified GDEs in a cyclic process to treat artificial wastewaters containing micro-pollutants.

What you get:
  • Practical skills for lab working
  • Detailed insights into different fabrication processes
  • Becoming familier with characterization devices and operating them
  • Collaboration in an international project
  • Close supervision


If you are interested, motivated and a self-dependent student, please contact me via email (mojtaba.mohseni@avt.rwth-aachen.de) for further information.