Degradation of 17α-ethynylestradiol (EE2) and estrogenicity were examined in a novel oxidative bioreactor (OBR) that combines small bioreactor platform (SBP) capsules and UV-LED (ultraviolet light emission diode) simultaneously, using enriched water and secondary effluent. Preliminary experiments examined three UV-LED wavelengths—267, 279, and 286 nm, with (indirect photolysis) and without (direct photolysis) H2O2 . The major degradation wavelength for both direct and indirect photolysis was 279 nm, while the major removal gap for direct vs. indirect degradation was at 267 nm. Reduction of EE2 was observed together with reduction of estrogenicity and mineralization, indicating that the EE2 degradation products are not estrogens. Furthermore, slight mineralization occurred with direct photolysis and more significant mineralization with the indirect process. The physical–biological OBR process showed major improvement over other processes studied here, at a very short hydraulic retention time. The OBR can feasibly replace the advanced oxidation process of UV-LED radiation with catalyst in secondary sedimentation tanks with respect to reduction ratio, and with no residual H2O2 . Further research into this OBR system is warranted, not only for EE2 degradation, but also to determine its capabilities for degrading mixtures of pharmaceuticals and pesticides, both of which have a significant impact on the environment and public health.
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- Biomass encapsulation
- Oxidative bioreactor
- Small bioreactor platform capsules
- Ultraviolet light-emitting diode
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science (all)
- Condensed Matter Physics