2013 Progress Report: Sustainable Catalytic Treatment of Waste Ion Exchange Brines for Reuse During Oxyanion Treatment in Drinking Water

EPA Grant Number: R835174
Title: Sustainable Catalytic Treatment of Waste Ion Exchange Brines for Reuse During Oxyanion Treatment in Drinking Water
Investigators: Werth, Charles J , Strathmann, Timothy J.
Institution: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
EPA Project Officer: Hiscock, Michael
Project Period: December 1, 2011 through November 30, 2014 (Extended to November 30, 2016)
Project Period Covered by this Report: December 1, 2012 through November 30,2013
Project Amount: $500,000
RFA: Research and Demonstration of Innovative Drinking Water Treatment Technologies in Small Systems (2011) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Drinking Water , Water

Objective:

The objectives of this work are to: (1) identify palladium (Pd) catalyst formulations with sufficient activity to reduce different target oxyanions in brine solutions, (2) determine if catalyst activity can be maintained for extended periods of operations, and (3) assess the economic and environmental life cycle costs of hybrid ion exchange/catalyst treatment systems.

Progress Summary:

During the reporting period, significant progress was made in the area of catalyst testing in column and batch systems, with the goal of obtaining the highest activity achievable to reduce costs and life cycle impacts. Over 10 different catalyst formulations, all with metal loading of either 2.5wt%Pd-0.25wt%In/AC or 0.5wt%Pd-0.05wt%In/AC, were tested in batch rectors for nitrate reduction activity. Temperature effects were also evaluated. Batch experiments provide important information regarding catalyst activity in short-term studies, they guide catalyst selection for long-term column studies, and they provide data needed to design the hybrid ion exchange (IX) – catalyst system at the pilot scale.
 
Two column studies were performed with a 0.5wt%Pd-0.05wt%In/AC catalyst; one with synthetic brine only and the other with synthetic and real brine. A larger column was constructed, tested and used for the second flow-through experiment. Contrary to expectations and previous results, the catalyst did not lose activity in a steady manner and continued to provide stable reduction of nitrate in the waste IX brine. Work continues with this column and a robust regeneration study will be performed when the catalyst deactivates.
 
Progress was made towards the design of a pilot study for the hybrid IX-catalyst system. These efforts include lab experiments to evaluate the performance of IX resins containing residual nitrate to mimic partial catalytic treatment, as well as collaboration with a third-party commercial company tasked to build the pilot-scale catalytic reactor for use in the hybrid system.
 
Further work was done to build upon previous results regarding environmental and economic life cycle costs of an ion exchange (IX) system with and without a catalytic brine treatment system to determine the benefit of brine recycle.

Future Activities:

During the next reporting period, our primary efforts will focus on continued column testing and catalyst regeneration, model refinement, life cycle assessment and starting the lab-scale pilot study. A suite of regeneration solutions will be tested on the flow-throw column reactor with a 0.5wt%Pd-0.05wt%In/AC catalyst. Pending the results of the column studies, additional brines will be run through the column and a new column study may be performed using 2.5wt%Pd-0.25wt%In/AC catalyst. Further refinement of the life cycle analysis of the hybrid ion exchange/catalytic system will be aided by ion exchange experiments, model results, and pilot study results.


Journal Articles on this Report : 3 Displayed | Download in RIS Format

Other project views: All 57 publications 15 publications in selected types All 15 journal articles
Type Citation Project Document Sources
Journal Article Choe JK, Mehnert MH, Guest JS, Strathmann TJ, Werth CJ. Comparative assessment of the environmental sustainability of existing and emerging perchlorate treatment technologies for drinking water. Environmental Science & Technology 2013;47(9):4644-4652. R835174 (2012)
R835174 (2013)
R835174 (2014)
R835174 (2015)
R835174 (Final)
  • Abstract from PubMed
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  • Journal Article Liu J, Choe JK, Sasnow Z, Werth CJ, Strathmann TJ. Application of a Re–Pd bimetallic catalyst for treatment of perchlorate in waste ion-exchange regenerant brine. Water Research 2013:47(1):91-101. R835174 (2012)
    R835174 (2013)
    R835174 (2014)
    R835174 (2015)
    R835174 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Zhang R, Shuai D, Guy KA, Shapley JR, Strathmann TJ, Werth CJ. Elucidation of nitrate reduction mechanisms on a Pd-In bimetallic catalyst using isotope labeled nitrogen species. ChemCatChem 2013;5(1):313-321. R835174 (2012)
    R835174 (2013)
    R835174 (2014)
    R835174 (2015)
    R835174 (Final)
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  • Supplemental Keywords:

    Nitrate, perchlorate, ion exchange, brine reuse, catalytic reduction, palladium, indium, rhenium, toxics, innovative technology, cost-benefit, integrated assessment.

    Relevant Websites:

    Strathmann Research Group - Publications Exit

    Progress and Final Reports:

    Original Abstract
  • 2012 Progress Report
  • 2014 Progress Report
  • 2015 Progress Report
  • Final Report