Biogenic iron oxide nanoparticles and activated sodium persulphate for hydrocarbon remediation in contaminated soil

Oladotun P. Bolade, Anuoluwa A. Akinsiku, Oluwatobi S. Oluwafemi, Akan B. Williams, Nsikak U. Benson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Biogenic iron oxide nanoparticles synthesized from a locally sourced, readily available plant — Azadirachta indica, were used synergistically with sodium persulphate (PS) to degrade total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPHs) in contaminated soil. A chemometric approach to optimizing the conditions for the degradation of TPH was developed using central composite design (CCD). Characterization of iron oxide nanoparticles was carried out with X-ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), high-resolution transmission electron microscopy (HRTEM), and selected electron area diffraction (SAED). Analysis of TPH was carried out with gas chromatography flame ionization detector (GC-FID). The optimum condition for the complete degradation of TPH was achieved at pH 6.0 and oxidant dosage of 0.74 M within 14 h and 5 days. Iron nanoparticles AZA FeNP (1:1) and AZA FeNP (2:1) were synthesized by varying the ratio of extract/precursor. The nanoparticles displayed heterogeneous, amorphous morphology with increased agglomeration in AZA FeNP (1:1). AZA FeNP (2:1) XRD spectra exhibited characteristic peaks at 27.0°, 35.4° and 44.5°, which are attributed to iron nanoparticles. TEM and HR-TEM images confirmed spherical nanoclusters’ presence with an average size of 9.3 and 10.0 nm for AZA FeNP (1:1) and AZA FeNP (2:1), respectively. The EDX spectra displayed intense peaks of oxygen, carbon, and iron at 0.4, 0.6 and 6.4 KeV confirming the presence of FeNP. Under optimized conditions, PS alone degraded 68% TPH while 0.07 and 0.15 g/L FeNP achieved ∼93 and 95% degradation, respectively. Additionally, 0.07 and 0.15 g/L FeNP-activated PS achieved ∼99 and 100% TPH degradation, respectively. The outcome of these findings suggests that FeNP synthesized using A. indica successfully catalyzed PS for complete degradation of TPH in crude oil-contaminated soil.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101719
JournalEnvironmental Technology and Innovation
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021


  • Central composite design
  • Crude oil contamination
  • FeO nanoparticles
  • Green synthesis
  • Sodium persulphate
  • Total petroleum hydrocarbon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • Soil Science
  • Plant Science


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