Evaluating UV254 absorbance reductions in landfill leachate for municipal sewage co-treatment through timed UV/electrooxidation

Yugo Sato, Yingying Xiang, Patrick Cooper, Gabriela Scheibel Cassol, Yu Luo, Qian Zeng, Chii Shang, Zhiyong Jason Ren, Guanghao Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Landfill leachate contains dissolved organic matter (DOM) exhibiting high ultraviolet absorbance at 254 nm (UVA254). The UVA254 limits leachate co-treatment with municipal sewage by hindering the downstream UV disinfection efficiency at wastewater treatment plants. Here, we alleviated the UVA254 by timing the radiation in a UV/electrooxidation (UV/EO) process to accelerate reactive species formation. At 200 A·m−2, the UV radiation was delayed by 10 min to accumulate 21 mg·L−1 as Cl2, which enhanced the initial radical formation rate by 5.25 times compared with a simultaneous UV/EO. The timed operation increased the steady-state concentrations of ClO by 700 times to 4.11 × 10−14 M and reduced the leachate UVA254 by 78.2% after 60 min. We identified that aromatic formulas with low oxygen content were susceptible to UV/EO from Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry analysis. The toxicity of the treated leachate and generated byproducts was assessed through specific oxygen uptake rates (SOUR) and developmental assays with Platynereis dumerilii. After quenching the residual chlorine, leachate co-treatment at 3.5% v/v presented minimal toxicological risk. Our findings provide operational insights for applying UV/EO in high UVA254 matrices such as landfill leachate.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number130624
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
StatePublished - Mar 5 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pollution
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry


  • advanced oxidation process
  • dissolved organic matter
  • electrooxidation
  • landfill leachate
  • municipal sewage


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