Control of pathogens and pharmaceutical compounds by biochar-supported photocatalysts under solar light irradiation

EPA Grant Number: SU836139
Title: Control of pathogens and pharmaceutical compounds by biochar-supported photocatalysts under solar light irradiation
Investigators: Kan, Eunsung
Institution: University of Hawaii at Manoa
EPA Project Officer: Sergeant, Anne
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 2015 through August 31, 2016
Project Amount: $14,999
RFA: P3 Awards: A National Student Design Competition for Sustainability Focusing on People, Prosperity and the Planet (2015) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: P3 Awards , Pollution Prevention/Sustainable Development , Sustainability , P3 Challenge Area - Water

Objective:

The goal of this project is to effectively remove microbial pathogens and pharmaceutical compounds from reclaimed wastewater using a novel solar light-assisted photocatalytic process. Thus, this project will aim at effective wastewater and water pollution control for agricultural reuse of treated wastewater.

Approach:

The specific approaches will include: 1) Design and synthesize a biochar-supported solar light-assisted multifunctional photocatalyst; 2) Understand adsorption of pharmaceutical compounds and pathogens onto the photocatalyst/biochar at various conditions, and 3) Assess the oxidative degradation/inactivation of pharmaceutical compounds and pathogens in terms of the removal efficiency of target pharmaceutical drugs, mineralization, and toxicity.

Expected Results:

The project will result in several outputs including: i) Synthesis of novel functional biochar-supported photocatalysts, ii) understanding of adsorption capacity to eliminate pharmaceutical compounds and pathogens from wastewater, and iii) photocatalytic oxidation/inactivation of pharmaceutical compounds and pathogens at various conditions.

As potential outcomes, this project will contribute to sustainable management of water resource for agricultural use by allowing the beneficial reuse of reclaimed wastewater and helping to protect human health and environments by providing a secure water resource.

Supplemental Keywords:

Pharmaceutical compounds, pathogen, reuse of wastewater, photocatalyst, solar light, TiO2, biochar