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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published online by De Gruyter November 14, 2022

Degradation of phenolic pollutants by persulfate-based advanced oxidation processes: metal and carbon-based catalysis

  • Hongli Su ORCID logo , Azadeh Nilghaz , Dan Liu , Rashid Mehmood , Charles Christopher Sorrell and Jingliang Li EMAIL logo


Wastewater recycling is a solution to address the global water shortage. Phenols are major pollutants in wastewater, and they are toxic even at very low concentrations. Advanced oxidation process (AOP) is an emerging technique for the effective degradation and mineralization of phenols into water. Herein, we aim at giving an insight into the current state of the art in persulfate-based AOP for the oxidation of phenols using metal/metal-oxide and carbon-based materials. Special attention has been paid to the design strategies of high-performance catalysts, and their advantages and drawbacks are discussed. Finally, the key challenges that govern the implementation of persulfate-based AOP catalysts in water purification, in terms of cost and environmental friendliness, are summarized and possible solutions are proposed. This work is expected to help the selection of the optimal strategy for treating phenol emissions in real scenarios.

Corresponding author: Jingliang Li, Institute of Frontier Materials, Deakin University, Geelong, VIC 3220, Australia, E-mail:

Award Identifier / Grant number: DP210100482

Funding source: Deakin University

  1. Author contributions: Hongli Su: conceptualization, writing – original draft preparation, figures edition. Azadeh Nilghaz: figures edition, writing – reviewing and editing. Dan Liu: writing – reviewing and editing. Rashid Mehmood: figures edition. Charles Christopher Sorrell: writing – reviewing and editing. Jingliang Li: conceptualization, supervision, writing – reviewing and editing, funding acquisition.

  2. Research funding: JL Li acknowledges the Australian Research Council for support through a Discovery Project (DP210100482). AN would like to express her gratitude and deepest thanks to Deakin University for giving her financial support through Alfred Deakin Research Fund.

  3. Conflict of interest statement: The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest regarding this article.


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Received: 2022-06-08
Accepted: 2022-09-02
Published Online: 2022-11-14

© 2022 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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