Rapid determination of chemical oxygen demand using a focused microwave heating system featuring temperature control

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Abstract

This paper demonstrates the use of a microwave heating system, employed in the chemical digestion step, for the determination of chemical oxygen demand in wastewater. The results are first compared with those provided by standard methods using reference substances. The problems arising from abrupt heating of the sample and the potential thermal decomposition of potassium dichromate are examined. Two different approaches to sample digestion involving a gradually increasing irradiation time were tested. First, a constant power strategy is applied, and the second proposes a constant temperature approach by using a temperature control system. By optimising the operating conditions, the digestion time was reduced to 8-60 times with respect to the standard method. The reference digestion time is 5min. In especially difficult digestions, the proposed approach provides a substantially improved degradation with respect to conventional procedures. The procedure was applied to wastewater from various industries and found to ensure thorough digestion of all samples and to provide favourable results in all cases tested. © 2003 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-109
JournalAnalytica Chimica Acta
Volume491
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2003

Keywords

  • Chemical oxygen demand
  • Focused microwave oven
  • Microwave digestion
  • Temperature control
  • Wastewater

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