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Photocatalytic degradation of dimethyl terephthalate in aqueous suspensions of titanium dioxide

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The photocatalytic degradation of dimethyl terephthalate (DMT, 1) has been investigated in aqueous suspensions of titanium dioxide (TiO2) by monitoring the depletion of Total Organic Carbon (TOC) content as a function of irradiation time under a variety of conditions. The degradation kinetics were studied using different parameters such as pH, substrate and photocatalyst concentration, a different kind of titanium dioxide and the presence of electron acceptors such as H2O2, KBrO3 and (NH4)2S2O8 in addition to molecular oxygen. The photocatalytic activity was better for Degussa P25 as compared to the other photocatalysts. From the obtained kinetic data a detailed account of the influence of various parameters on the degradation rate for the mineralization of the compound is given. The degradation products were analyzed using the GC/MS technique and probable pathways for the formation of different products have been proposed.


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