Phosphorus chemicals control key aspects of eutrophication and other environmental process. Hypophosphite (HP) originating from manmade and natural sources was evidenced as present in the environment and was investigated rarely. Recently, iron oxide has been used as a catalyst for oxidising organic contaminants with hydrogen peroxide (i.e. heterogeneous Fenton-like reaction). This study focused mainly on the oxidation of 1.0 mM HP by hydrogen peroxide in the presence of a novel iron oxide catalyst (B1 catalyst) which was prepared through a fluidised-bed Fenton reactor (FBR-Fenton). The background experiments including the oxidation experiment of HP by air only, by H2O2 only and adsorption of HP by B1 catalyst were first elucidated. It was found that HP could not be oxidised at all by air and H2O2 at pH 2.5–12 in 24 hours. On the other hand, it could be adsorbed by B1 catalyst with 89.8% removal at pH 2.5 in 5 hours and complete desorption at pH 11.0. Then, we investigated the effects of pH and Fe leaching from the catalyst on the oxidative efficiency of HP. We found that although the removal rate of HP at pH 2.5 is faster than that at pH 4.0, B1 catalyst has a higher HP oxidation efficiency at pH 4.0 than that at pH 2.5. We conclude that it is a major heterogeneous catalytic oxidation by our novel iron oxide catalyst to oxidise HP at pH 4.0. Also, B1 could be a useful and potential catalyst for the treatment of HP wastewater.

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