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Oxidative Degradation of Decabromodiphenyl Ether (BDE 209) by Potassium Permanganate: Reaction Pathways, Kinetics, and Mechanisms Assisted by Density Functional Theory Calculations

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journal contribution
posted on 07.04.2015, 00:00 by Jiaqi Shi, Ruijuan Qu, Mingbao Feng, Xinghao Wang, Liansheng Wang, Shaogui Yang, Zunyao Wang
This study found that decabromodiphenyl ether (BDE 209) could be oxidized effectively by potassium permanganate (KMnO4) in sulfuric acid medium. A total of 15 intermediate oxidative products were detected. The reaction pathways were proposed, which primarily included cleavage of the ether bond to form pentabromophenol. Direct oxidation on the benzene ring also played an important role because hydroxylated polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) were produced during the oxidation process. The degradation occurred dramatically in the first few minutes and fitted pseudo-first-order kinetics. Increasing the water content decelerated the reaction rate, whereas increasing the temperature facilitated the reaction. In addition, density functional theory (DFT) was employed to determine the frontier molecular orbital (FMO) and frontier electron density (FED) of BDE 209 and the oxidative products. The theoretical calculation results confirmed the proposed reaction pathways.