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Microwave Catalytic Degradation of Antibiotic Molecules by 2D Sheets of Spinel Nickel Ferrite

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journal contribution
posted on 28.08.2020 by Sandhya Mishra, Prashant Kumar, Sujoy Kumar Samanta
Pharmaceutical wastes such as antibiotics in the industrially polluted water are hazardous for the aquatic ecosystem and the environment and, hence, need to be adequately treated. Prompt and efficient degradation makes the microwave (MW) technique a cutting edge technology. Apart from promptness and efficiency, the ideal MW catalysts need to be thermally robust, recyclable, and economic. The coprecipitation synthesized highly crystalline spinel nickel ferrite (SNFO, Eg ∼1.76 eV, Ms ∼20 emu/g) and zinc ferrite (SZFO, Eg ∼2.47 eV, Ms ∼4 emu/g) atomic sheets are good MW absorbers and result in ∼90% and ∼86% MW degradation efficiency, respectively, for the tetracycline hydrochloride (TCH) antibiotic. The whole reaction is completed within 15 min, and it demonstrates the recyclability with the catalyst being unaltered. The ferrites are not only of low cost but also thermally robust and magnetically retrievable. The microwave degradation exhibits the pseudo-second-order kinetics. The quality of water after the degradation, especially the carbon content, has been quantified, and the degradation pathways have also been determined.