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Open Chemistry

formerly Central European Journal of Chemistry

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Volume 13, Issue 1


Volume 13 (2015)

Studies on the Electrical Behaviour and Removal of Toluene with a Dielectric Barrier Discharge

Michael Schmidt
  • Corresponding author
  • INP (Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology) Felix-Hausdorff-Straße 2, 17489 Greifswald, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Milko Schiorlin
  • INP (Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology) Felix-Hausdorff-Straße 2, 17489 Greifswald, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Ronny Brandenburg
  • INP (Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology) Felix-Hausdorff-Straße 2, 17489 Greifswald, Germany
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
Published Online: 2014-11-26 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/chem-2015-0056


This contribution attempts to establish an easy-to-apply non-thermal plasma reactor for efficient toluene removal. Derived from the already established knowledge of the so called Dielectric Barrier Discharge (DBD) Stack Reactor a new model reactor was used in this work. The DBD Stack Reactor is a multi-elements reactor but in this work only one stack element was used to investigate the efficiency and efficacy of toluene removal. In case of reliable results the scalability process for industrial application is already well known. Therefore, laboratory experiments were conducted in dry and wet synthetic air with an admixture of 50 ppm toluene. Along with the toluene removal process the electrical behaviour of the discharge configuration was investigated. It was found that the electrical capacitance of the dielectric barrier changes with variations of the operating voltage. This could be due to the changes in the area of the dielectric barrier which is covered with plasma. Additionally, it was found that the power input into the plasma, at a fixed operating voltage, is proportional to the frequency, which is in agreement with the literature.

Regarding the decomposition process, the total removal of toluene was achieved at specific input energy densities of 55 J L-1 under dry conditions and 110 J L-1 under wet conditions. The toluene removal was accompanied by the production of nitric acid (dry conditions) and formic acid (wet conditions). The latter suggested a combination of the plasma reactor with a water scrubber as an approach for total removal of pollutant molecules.

Graphical Abstract

Keywords : non-thermal plasma; dielectric barrier discharge; capacitance; toluene removal


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About the article

Received: 2014-01-29

Accepted: 2014-05-07

Published Online: 2014-11-26

Citation Information: Open Chemistry, Volume 13, Issue 1, ISSN (Online) 2391-5420, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/chem-2015-0056.

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© 2015 Michael Schmidt et al.. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

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