Enhanced degradation of metronidazole by cobalt doped TiO2/sulfite process under visible light

Yanlin Zhang, Wei Chu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


The degradation of metronidazole (MNZ) by cobalt doped TiO2 activation of sulfite has been studied in this work. The Co-TiO2 was synthesized using a sol–gel method and characterized by TEM, EDS, DRS, XPS and EPR. The catalytic stability was tested by consecutive reuses. Up to 94% of MNZ was removed after 18 min reaction with Co-TiO2 and sulfite dosage being 0.1 g/L and 5 mM, respectively. The influencing parameters, such as the initial concentration of MNZ (0.03–0.2 mM), sulfite dosage (1–10 mM), catalyst dosage (0.1–0.8 g/L) and pH (2–12) were examined. The MNZ removal was pH-dependent with an optimal pH of 7.0. The presence of halides and nitrite could inhibit the process effectively. The reaction mechanisms were explored by radical quenching experiments and EPR measurements, and investigated by the XPS spectra of the catalysts before and after reactions. The formation of Co-SO3 complex and the Co2+–Co3+–Co2+ redox processes on the surface of the catalyst were crucial for sulfite activation. Compared to other Co species/persulfate processes, Co-TiO2/sulfite/LED combined the advantages of TiO2 photocatalysis and activation of sulfite with transition metal. The study suggests a novel and promising process for the treatment of antibiotics in water.

Original languageEnglish
Article number120900
JournalSeparation and Purification Technology
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2022


  • Advanced oxidation process
  • Co-TiO
  • Metronidazole
  • Sulfite activation
  • Visible LED

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation


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