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A Modified Method for the Accurate Determination of Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) in High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater

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DOI: 10.4236/ojogas.2018.34023    470 Downloads   798 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

In this work, in order to find a method for the accurate determination of chemical oxygen demand (CODCr) in high chloride oilfield wastewater, the interferences of chloridion (Cl-) on CODCr determination were first studied based on the Chinese national standard GB 11914-89. The results showed that the CODCr values and deviations determined by the classical potassium dichromate (K2Cr2O7) method increased gradually with the increase of Cl- mass concentration in water samples. Then, theoretical and experimental studies on reducing interferences of Cl- on CODCr determination were carried out. The results showed that different concentrations of K2Cr2O7 exhibited different oxidation capacities on Cl-, while having little effects on the oxidation of organic compounds. More specifically, when the concentration of K2Cr2O7 was 0.025 mol·L-1 and the mass ratio of HgSO4:Cl- was 10:1, the interferences of Cl- on CODCr determination were the slightest. Finally, a low concentration oxidant method was proposed for the accurate determination of CODCr in high chloride oilfield wastewaters. The performances of the proposed method were verified by the simulated and actual high chloride oilfield wastewater. The results showed that when Cl- ≤ 20,000 mg·L-1 and COD < 100 mg·L-1, the relative prediction errors of CODCr provided by the proposed method were acceptable, which revealed that the low concentration oxidant method is feasible and reliable for the determination of CODCr in high chloride oilfield wastewater.

1. Introduction

Chemical oxygen demand (COD) is one of the most important indexes to assess the pollution of organic compounds in water systems [1] . In China, potassium dichromate (K2Cr2O7) method is legalized by the Chinese government to determine CODCr in water samples [2] [3] . In practical operation, the high level of chloridion (Cl) in water samples would cause serious interferences on CODCr determination [4] [5] . Therefore, the Chinese national standard method Water Quality―Determination of Chemical Oxygen Demand―Dichromate Method (GB 11914-89) regulated that when the content of Cl is less than 1000 mg・L1, mercuric sulfate (HgSO4) can be added to eliminate the interferences of Cl [6] . For the samples with Cl content more than 1000 mg・L1, they should be firstly diluted quantitatively so as to reduce their Cl contents to less than 1000 mg・L1 and then determine their CODCr according to the Chinese national standard GB 11914-89. Research revealed that, the COD values of water samples with high Cl concentration and low COD content were still large after diluting, although HgSO4 was used to mask Cl, and the relative errors of CODCr increased with the increase of Cl concentration. However, during the process of monitoring and analysis, the high chloride wastewaters are often encountered, such as chemical wastewater, marine products processing wastewater, rare-earth mineral refining wastewater, oil produced wastewater. For example, Chen et al. [7] reported that the mass concentration of Cl in wastewater of an oilfield was more than 120000 mg・L1, whose COD content was low, and the COD values would become smaller after treatment. But the local environmental protection department used the Chinese national standard GB 11914-89 to monitor its COD concentration with results fluctuating significantly and gave the actual measured CODCr values ranging from several hundreds to 2500 mg・L1, which greatly exceeded the national requirements of wastewater discharge (COD < 100 mg∙L1) [8] . This dilemma brings huge troubles to the wastewater disposal departments, local environmental monitoring and law enforcement departments as well as the water quality analysis workers. Therefore, how to eliminate the interferences of Cl on the CODCr determination has become a research hot for environmental monitoring workers [9] .

At present, there are many methods for reducing the interferences of Cl, such as chlorine correction method, low concentration oxidant method, silver salt precipitation method, sealed digestion method, mercury salt method and no external heating method [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] , which have not yet been unified. However, in the practical operations of the environmental monitoring department, the national or industrial standards recommended by the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection are still used as the reference method. Among them, potassium dichromate method (GB 11914-89, abbreviated as the classical method) [6] is the mandatory national standard, whereas fast digestion-spectrophotometric method (HJ/T 399-2007) [15] , chlorine correction method (HJ/T 70-2001) [16] and potassium iodide-alkaline potassium permanganate determination method (HJ/T 132-2003) [17] are the standards released by the National Environmental Protection Department, which are the supplements to the national standard, and whose legal status are naturally lower than that of the classical method (GB 11914-89) [6] . Consequently, during the supervision of law enforcement, the COD determination of samples with high requirements such as discharge sample, assessment sample, arbitration analysis sample is preferred by the classical method (GB 11914-89).

Considering the current research situation mentioned above, the aim of the work is to develop a method that can meet the national standard, and can accurately determine the CODCr in wastewaters with high content of Cl. In this work, the interferences of Cl on CODCr determination were first investigated by experiments based on the Chinese national standard GB 11914-89, and then the mechanism of interferences was explained. After that, based on the theoretical analysis of electrode potential, a low concentration oxidant method was proposed for the determination of CODCr in high chloride wastewaters. The performances of the proposed method were verified by simulated and actual high chloride oilfield wastewater. The results demonstrated that the proposed low concentration oxidant method based on GB 11914-89 was accurate and reliable, and thus it is a feasible method for the determination of CODCr in high chloride oilfield wastewater.

2. Experimental Section

2.1. Reagents and Instruments

Reagents: potassium dichromate solution (1/6K2Cr2O7) with concentrations of 0.25 mol・L1, 0.10 mol・L1 and 0.025 mol・L1; ammonium ferrous sulfate solution [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] with concentrations of 0.1 mol・L1, 0.04 mol・L1 and 0.01 mol・L1; mercury sulfate (HgSO4, A.R.), silver sulfate (Ag2SO4, A.R.); sulfuric acid (H2SO4, 98%); seven hydrated ferrous sulfate (FeSO4・7H2O, A.R.); standard potassium acid phthalate (KC8H5O4, G.R.); sodium chloride (NaCl, A.R.); 1,10-phenanthroline. All these reagents were purchased from the Sinopharm Chemical Reagent Co., Ltd. and used without further purification (Shanghai, China).

Instruments: JH-12 COD constant temperature heater (Laoshan Electronic General Factory Co., Ltd., Qingdao, China); ICS-2100 ion chromatography (Thermo Fisher Scientific, U.S.A ).

2.2. Experimental Methods

1) Classical K2Cr2O7 method: this classical method was described in detailed in the Chinese national standard Water Quality―Determination of Chemical Oxygen Demand―Dichromate Method (GB 11914-89) [6] . Before determination, the method was calibrated by the standard solution of KC8H5O4 with a reference CODCr of 500 mg・L1 for 5 times, giving the relative errors of CODCr less than 4%, which indicated that the operation technique, instrument and chemical reagents used in this work meet the requirements.

2) Low concentration oxidant method: this method was modified based on the classical standard method described above. More specifically, during the CODCr determination, 0.1 mol・L1 or 0.025 mol・L1 of 1/6K2Cr2O7 standard solution was used instead of 0.25 mol・L1 of 1/6K2Cr2O7 standard solution as the oxidant, whose residual content was then back titrated by corresponding 0.04 mol・L1 and 0.01 mol・L1 of [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] standard solution, respectively.

3. Results and Discussion

3.1. Interferences of Cl on CODCr Determination in Simulated High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater

3.1.1. Determination of High CODCr in Simulated High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater by Classical K2Cr2O7 Method

A series of standard water samples with a theoretical CODCr value of 500 mg・L−1 and Cl mass concentrations of 100, 500, 1000, 2000, 4000, 8000, 10,000, 15,000 and 20,000 mg・L−1 were prepared as simulated high chloride oilfield wastewater by using standard KC8H5O4 and standard NaCl. According to the classical K2Cr2O7 method, 20 mL of each water sample was transferred into a COD digestion tube, then 0.4 g HgSO4 and 30 mL AgSO4-H2SO4 were added to the sample solution, and finally the mixture of each water was oxidized with 10 mL of 0.25 mol・L−1 K2Cr2O7 standard solution. After heating reflux for about 2 h, the residual content of K2Cr2O7 was back titrated by corresponding 0.l mol・L1 [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] standard solution. The obtained CODCr results in the prepared water samples are summarized in Table 1.

Table 1. Results of determination of high chlorine and high COD (500 mg・L1) standard water samples by classical K2Cr2O7 method.

As can be seen from Table 1, for the simulated high chloride oilfield wastewater samples with a theoretical CODCr of 500 mg・L1 and high level of Cl, when the mass concentration of Cl was less than 2000 mg・L1, the relative errors of CODCr determined by the classical K2Cr2O7 method were relatively small (< 5.7%), which almost accorded with the national requirements that the relative error of CODCr determination should be within ±5% [18] [19] . This is because the addition of 0.4 g HgSO4 in 20 mL water samples was perfectly able to coordinate 2000 mg・L1 Cl in wastewater, and then the interferences of Cl on CODCr determination can be virtually eliminated. However, with the increase of Cl mass concentration in water samples, the Cl in water samples could not be completely coordinated by 0.4 g HgSO4, resulting in the obtained concentration of CODCr in water samples increased gradually, and the differences between the experimental values and theoretical ones also increased gradually. All the above results indicated that pseudo CODCr was introduced during the determination of CODCr in high chloride wastewater by the classical K2Cr2O7 method. As a result, if the interferences of Cl cannot be effectively eliminated, the obtained inaccurate CODCr results will cause wrong expert conclusion for water quality.

3.1.2. Determination of Low CODCr in Simulated High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater by Classical K2Cr2O7 Method

A series of standard water samples with a theoretical CODCr value of 100 mg・L−1 and Cl mass concentrations of 100, 500, 1000, 2000, 4000, 8000, 10,000, 15,000 and 20,000 mg・L−1 were prepared as simulated high chloride oilfield wastewater by using standard KC8H5O4 and standard NaCl. According to the classical K2Cr2O7 method, 20 mL of each water sample was transferred into a COD digestion tube, then 0.4 g HgSO4 and 30 mL AgSO4-H2SO4 were added to the sample solution, and finally the mixture of each water was oxidized with 10 mL of 0.25 mol・L1 K2Cr2O7 standard solution. After heating reflux for about 2 h, the residual content of K2Cr2O7 was back titrated by corresponding 0.1 mol・L1 [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2∙6H2O] standard solution. The obtained CODCr results in the prepared water samples are summarized in Table 2.

Table 2. Results of determination of high chlorine and low COD (100 mg・L1) standard water samples by classical K2Cr2O7 method.

As can be seen from Table 2, for the simulated high chloride oilfield wastewater samples with a theoretical CODCr of 100 mg・L−1 and high level of Cl, when the mass concentration of Cl was less than 500 mg・L−1, the relative errors of CODCr determined by the classical K2Cr2O7 method almost conformed to the allowable error range required by the Chinese government. But with the increase of Cl mass concentration in water samples, not only the CODCr values determined by the classical K2Cr2O7 method increased gradually, but also the differences between the experimental values and theoretical ones increased gradually. And the relative errors obtained in low COD water samples are more remarkable than those of high COD water samples as described in Section 3.1.1, which is mainly due to the higher relative concentration of Cl in low COD water samples than those in high COD water samples under the same mass concentration of Cl. Therefore, it is very necessary for pollutant discharging companies, environmental monitoring and legislation departments to develop a method for the accurate determination of COD in high chloride wastewater.

3.1.3. Analysis of Interference Mechanism

At present, the classical K2Cr2O7 method (GB 11914-89) is used to determine COD in water sample by concentrated H2SO4-assisted heating reflux. During the reaction process, not only organic compounds but also Cl in water sample were oxidized by K2Cr2O7. The interferences of Cl are mainly attributed to the following two aspects:

1) Consumption of oxidant K2Cr2O7

Regarding water sample containing Cl, apart from the reaction between organic compounds and K2Cr2O7, the Cl can be also oxidized by K2Cr2O7 and thus consumes some oxidants, which will affect the accuracy of COD determination. The corresponding reaction equation about Cl in the water sample can be expressed as follows:

2 Cl + 1 2 O 2 Cl 2 + [ O ] 2 (1)

Theoretically, 0.226 mg oxygen is needed for complete oxidation of 1 mg Cl [15.999/(2 × 35.453) = 0.226]. Taking the above reason into account, Cl can cause huge positive interferences on CODCr determination because of its consumption of oxidant K2Cr2O7 under the condition of Chinese national standard GB 11914-89.

2) Consumption of catalyst Ag2SO4

In the mixture system of H2SO4-K2Cr2O7, acidified K2Cr2O7 can just oxidize most of the organic compounds in the water sample. Only after adding catalyst Ag2SO4, can the straight chain aliphatic compounds be completely oxidized, which increases the oxidation rate of organic compounds and makes the oxidation reaction proceed more completely. However, if the water sample contains Cl, it will combine with Ag+ to produce AgCl precipitate, resulting in poisoning of the catalyst, then decreasing the oxidation rate of the sample, and finally affecting the final determination results of COD. The reaction between Cl and Ag2SO4 is expressed as follows:

Ag 2 S O 4 + 2 C l 2 Ag C l + S O 4 2 ( K s p = 1.77 × 10 10 , 25 ˚ C ) (2)

In addition, the resulting AgCl precipitate can be further oxidized by K2Cr2O7, which also consumes some oxidants. Moreover, the white precipitate makes the solution color at the end of titration become grey and difficult to be titrated accurately.

3.2. Reducing Interferences of Cl on CODCr Determination in High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater

3.2.1. Theoretical Analysis of Reducing Cl Interference

During the COD determination, the interference reaction of Cl is as follows:

C r 2 O 7 2 + 14 H + + 6 C l = 2 C r 3 + + 7 H 2 O + 3 C l 2 (3)

In Equation (3), the electrode reaction of electron pair C r 2 O 7 2 / C r 3 + is:

C r 2 O 7 2 + 14 H + + 6 e = 2 C r 3 + + 7 H 2 O (4)

And the electrode reaction of electron pair Cl2/Cl is:

C l 2 + 2 e = 2 C l (5)

According to the Nernst equation, the electrode potential of electron pair C r 2 O 7 2 / C r 3 + can be calculated as follows:

φ C r 2 O 7 2 / C r 3 + = φ C r 2 O 7 2 / C r 3 + θ + R T n F ln α C r 2 O 7 2 α H + 14 α C r 3 + 2 = φ C r 2 O 7 2 / C r 3 + θ + R T n F ln α H + 14 + R T n F ln α C r 2 O 7 2 α C r 3 + 2 (6)

Similarly, the electrode potential of electron pair Cl2/Cl can be calculated as:

φ C l 2 / C l = φ C l 2 / C l θ + R T n F ln p C l 2 / p θ α C l 2 (7)

In the determination of CODCr, the conditional electrode potential of oxidant K2Cr2O7 can reach to φ C r 2 O 7 2 / C r 3 + = 1.55 V due to the strong acid medium (in non strong acid medium φ C r 2 O 7 2 / C r 3 + = 1.33 V ) [20] , thus the oxidation reaction of Cl can occur completely ( φ C l 2 / C l = 1.36 V ). And the higher the oxidation potential is, the easier the Cl will be oxidized, and consequently the greater the error introduced is.

As can be known from Equation (6), the concentration of C r 2 O 7 2 and Cr3+ is one of the main factors that affect the electrode potential. Under certain conditions of CODCr determination, the higher the oxidant concentration is, the more residual amount of oxidant will be after the reaction, which makes the ratio of C r 2 O 7 2 / C r 3 + larger, and results in a higher oxidation potential. Theoretically speaking, the proper reduction of the oxidant concentration is helpful to reduce the oxidation potential of K2Cr2O7 and thus reduce the interferences of Cl on CODCr determination.

3.2.2. Effect of Oxidant Concentration on the Oxidation of Cl

In order to investigate the effect of oxidant concentration on Cl oxidation, a series of NaCl solutions with Cl mass concentrations of 1000, 2000, 4000, 8000, 15,000 and 20,000 mg・L−1 were prepared by standard NaCl. 20 mL of each water sample was transferred into a COD digestion tube, then appropriate amounts of HgSO4 [m(HgSO4): m(Cl)=10:1] were added to the sample solution, and finally the mixture of each water was oxidized with 10 mL of 0.25, 0.1 and 0.025 mol・L−1 K2Cr2O7 standard solution, respectively. After heating reflux for about 2 h, the residual content of K2Cr2O7 was back titrated by corresponding 0.1, 0.04 and 0.01 mol・L−1 [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] standard solution, respectively. The obtained CODCr results in the prepared water samples are plotted in Figure 1.

Figure 1. Effect of oxidant concentration on the oxidation of Cl.

As can be seen from Figure 1, on the one hand, under the same Cl mass concentration, both the oxidation rate of Cl and obtained CODCr values increased gradually with the increase of oxidant concentration; on the other hand, under the same oxidant concentration, the obtained CODCr values and their relative errors also increased gradually with the increase of Cl concentration. When the oxidant concentration was about 0.025 mol・L−1, the oxidation rate of Cl was the smallest. These results indicated that the oxidant concentration plays an very important role during the determination of COD in high chloride wastewater. Therefore, the proper reduction of oxidant concentration is helpful to reduce the oxidation rate of Cl and improve the accuracy of CODCr determination, which is highly consistent with our theoretical analysis in Section 3.2.1.

3.2.3. Effect of Oxidant Concentration on the Oxidation of Organic Compounds

In order to investigate the effect of oxidant concentration on the oxidation of organic compounds, a series of standard KC8H5O4 solutions with theoretical CODCr values of 50, 100, 300 and 600 mg・L−1 were prepared by standard KC8H5O4. After proper dilution, 20 mL of each water sample was transferred into a COD digestion tube, then 30 mL AgSO4-H2SO4 was added to the sample solution, and finally the mixture of each water was oxidized with 10 mL of 0.25, 0.1 and 0.025 mol・L−1 K2Cr2O7 standard solution, respectively. After heating reflux for about 2 h, the residual content of K2Cr2O7 was back titrated by corresponding 0.1, 0.04 and 0.01 mol・L−1 [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] standard solution, respectively. The obtained CODCr results in the prepared water samples are summarized in Table 3.

Table 3. Effect of oxidant concentration on COD determination of standard KC8H5O4 water samples.

Table 3 revealed that under the same condition of CODCr determination, different concentrations of oxidants exhibit almost the same oxidation ability on the standard KC8H5O4, and the measured CODCr values are nearly consistent with the theoretical ones. In addition, with the increase of theoretical CODCr value in the samples, the measured results by different concentrations of oxidants are almost the same, which implied that the concentration of oxidant has little effect on the oxidation of organic compounds as long as the amount of K2Cr2O7 is enough.

3.2.4. Effect of the Amount of Masking Agent on CODCr Determination

In order to investigate the effect of the amount of masking agent on CODCr determination, in this part, a series of standard water samples with a theoretical CODCr value of 500 mg・L−1 and Cl mass concentrations of 1000, 2000, 4000, 8000, 15,000 and 20,000 mg・L−1 were prepared by standard KC8H5O4 and standard NaCl. After 10-folds dilution, 20 mL of each water sample was transferred into a COD digestion tube, then different amounts of HgSO4 based on the mass ratio of HgSO4:Cl together with 30 mL AgSO4-H2SO4 were added to the sample solution, and finally the mixture of each water was oxidized with 10 mL of 0.25 mol・L−1 K2Cr2O7 standard solution. After heating reflux for about 2 h, the residual content of K2Cr2O7 was back titrated by corresponding 0.1 mol・L−1 [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] standard solution. The obtained CODCr results in the prepared water samples are summarized in Table 4.

As can be seen from Table 4, the relative errors of CODCr results decreased gradually with the increase of the mass ratio of HgSO4: Cl. When the mass ratio of HgSO4: Cl is 10:1, the relative errors are small (<±3%), and they are not significantly improved with the increase of the mass ratio of HgSO4: Cl. However, the environmental pollution risk would increase if large amounts of HgSO4 were used. Therefore, 10:1 was suggested to be the suitable mass ratio of HgSO4: Cl for CODCr determination in high chlorine wastewater.

Table 4. Effect of mass ratio of HgSO4:Cl on CODCr determination in high chlorine water samples.

*The values in bracket are the relative errors and the same meanings in Table 5 and Table 6.

3.3. Determination of CODCr in High Chlorine Oilfield Wastewater by Low Concentration Oxidant Method

3.3.1. Determination of Low CODCr in Simulated High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater by Low Concentration Oxidant Method

A series of simulated high chlorine oilfield wastewater samples with theoretical CODCr values of 50 and 80 mg・L−1, and Cl mass concentrations of 1000, 2000, 4000, 8000, 15,000 and 20,000 mg・L−1 were prepared by standard KC8H5O4 and standard NaCl. According to the classical K2Cr2O7 method, 20 mL of each water sample was transferred into a COD digestion tube, then appropriate amounts of HgSO4 [m(HgSO4) : m(Cl)=10:1] and 30 mL AgSO4-H2SO4 were added to the sample solution, and finally the mixture of each wastewater was oxidized with 10 mL of 0.25 mol・L−1, 0.1 mol・L−1 and 0.025 mol・L−1 K2Cr2O7 standard solution, respectively. After heating reflux for about 2 h, the residual content of K2Cr2O7 was back titrated by corresponding 0.1, 0.04 and 0.01 mol・L−1 [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] standard solution, respectively. The obtained CODCr results in the simulated high chlorine oilfield wastewater samples are summarized in Table 5.

Table 5. Determination results of high chlorine and low COD simulated oilfield wastewater using different concentrations of oxidants.

Table 5 shows that with the increase of Cl mass concentration in wastewater samples, the relative errors of CODCr determination increased gradually. However, the obtained results provided by low concentration oxidant method (0.025 mol・L−1) are much better than those determined by 0.25 mol・L−1 and 0.1 mol・L−1 oxidants, and the relative errors conform to the national requirements for CODCr determination. These experimental results demonstrated that low concentration oxidant method is feasible for the determination of low CODCr in high chlorine wastewater when Cl concentration is not more than 20000 mg・L−1 and COD<100 mg・L−1.

3.3.2. Determination of High CODCr in Simulated High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater by Low Concentration Oxidant Method

It can be inferred from the above experimental results that the determination of high CODCr in high chlorine wastewater is also possible by low concentration oxidant method. In order to verify this inference, a series of simulated high chlorine oilfield wastewater samples with theoretical CODCr values of 500, 1000 and 3000 mg・L−1, and Cl mass concentrations of 5000, 10,000, 50,000, 10,000 and 200,000 mg・L−1 were prepared by standard KC8H5O4 and standard NaCl. After proper dilution, 20 mL of each water sample was transferred into a COD digestion tube, then appropriate amounts of HgSO4 [m(HgSO4): m(Cl) = 10:1] and 30 mL AgSO4-H2SO4 were added to the sample solution, and finally the mixture of each wastewater was oxidized with 10 mL of 0.025 mol・L−1 K2Cr2O7 standard solution. After heating reflux for about 2 h, the residual content of K2Cr2O7 was back titrated by 0.01 mol・L−1 [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] standard solution. The obtained CODCr results in the simulated high chlorine oilfield wastewater samples are summarized in Table 6.

Table 6. Determination results of high chlorine and high COD simulated oilfield wastewater by low concentration oxidant method.

As can be seen from Table 6, the low concentration oxidant method provides relatively small errors for the determination of high CODCr in high chlorine wastewater, and the obtained results are accurate and reliable. The above experiments proved that it is feasible to determine CODCr (including both low COD and high COD) in high chlorine wastewater by low concentration oxidant method. Therefore, in the next part, we intend to extend the low concentration oxidant method to determine the CODCr values in actual high chloride oilfield wastewater.

3.3.3. Determination of CODCr in Actual High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater by Low Concentration Oxidant Method

Six kinds of oilfield wastewater samples named JHSX, JHCL, XJ81J, XJ81C, XJ91J and XJ91C were collected from Jianghan oilfield and Xinjiang oilfield, China. The Cl contents in the six wastewater samples are 92,744.4, 74,155.4, 7578.5, 7699.7, 2086.8 and 2273 mg・L−1, respectively, which were determined by a Thermo Fisher ICS-2100 ion chromatograph. It clearly shows that these wastewater samples belong to typical high chloride oilfield wastewater. Therefore, in this section, the CODCr values in these six high chloride oilfield wastewater samples were determined by the proposed low concentration oxidant method. According to the low concentration of oxidant method, each wastewater sample was diluted 10-folds and 20 mL of diluted wastewater sample was transferred into a COD digestion tube, then appropriate amounts of HgSO4 [m(HgSO4): m(Cl)=10:1] and 30 mL AgSO4-H2SO4 were added to the sample solution, and finally the mixture of each wastewater was oxidized with 0.025 mol・L−1 K2Cr2O7 standard solution. After heating reflux, the residual content of K2Cr2O7 was back titrated by corresponding 0.01 mol・L−1 [(NH4)2Fe(SO4)2・6H2O] standard solution. The obtained CODCr results in the six kinds of actual high chloride oilfield wastewater samples are summarized in Table 7.

Table 7. Determination results of CODCr in six actual high chloride oilfield wastewater samples by low concentration oxidant method.

As shown in Table 7, the CODCr values of six kinds of high chloride oilfield wastewater samples are not high, which ranges from 100 to 150 mg・L−1. Furthermore, spiked recovery experiments were carried out to verify the accuracy of low concentration oxidant method for CODCr determination in actual high chloride oilfield wastewater. Firstly, 500 mg・L−1 theoretical CODCr was added to the above six high chloride oilfield wastewater samples, and then the CODCr values of these spiked oilfield wastewater samples were determined by the proposed low concentration oxidant method. The spiked recoveries were calculated as c1/c2 × 100%, where c1 is the difference of measured total CODCr value of the spiked oilfield wastewater samples and unspiked oilfield wastewater samples; and c2 is the theoretical CODCr value of added standard KC8H5O4. The calculated recovery results are shown in Table 7. It can be seen from Table 7 that the spiked CODCr recoveries of six high chloride oilfield wastewater samples measured by the low concentration oxidant method were in the range of 95.4-106.5%, which revealed that the low concentration oxidant method is feasible and reliable for the determination of CODCr in high chloride oilfield wastewater.

4. Conclusions

1) As for high chloride water samples, the CODCr values and their deviations determined by the classical potassium dichromate (K2Cr2O7) method increased gradually with the increase of Cl mass concentration. These effect is more obvious in low CODCr wastewater than that of high CODCr wastewater, which revealed that Cl has serious interferences on the determination of CODCr based on the classical K2Cr2O7 method.

2) During the interference analysis, the oxidation abilities of K2Cr2O7 on Cl decreased as its decreasing concentration, while having little effects on the oxidation of organic compounds. More specifically, when the concentration of K2Cr2O7 was 0.025 mol・L−1, the interferences of Cl on CODCr determination were the slightest. Therefore, the optimum concentration of K2Cr2O7 in this study was identified as 0.025 mol・L−1 for the determination of CODCr in high chloride oilfield wastewater.

3) The relative errors of CODCr determined by the low concentration K2Cr2O7 method were relatively small and the measured results were accurate in simulated and actual high chloride oilfield wastewater. Moreover, like the Chinese national standard GB 11914-89 method, the low concentration K2Cr2O7 method is simple and feasible, and thus it is suitable for the analysis of water samples in large numbers, which proved to be a very effective method for the determination of CODCr in high chloride oilfield wastewater.

4) It was found that low concentration oxidant method has higher requirements on experimental conditions and operator levels due to the use of low concentration of oxidant for the determination of CODCr in high chloride oilfield wastewater. Therefore, during the process of testing, skilled operators and strict operations are crucial for the success of experiments.

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge the financial supports from the Open Fund of the HSE Key Laboratory of CNPC (Grant No. 2016D-5006-08), the Hubei Provincial Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 2018CFB165), and the Doctoral Scientific Research Startup Foundation of Yangtze University, China (Grant No. 801090010134).

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Zhang, S. , Chen, W. , Liu, Y. , Luo, P. and Gu, H. (2018) A Modified Method for the Accurate Determination of Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD) in High Chloride Oilfield Wastewater. Open Journal of Yangtze Oil and Gas, 3, 263-277. doi: 10.4236/ojogas.2018.34023.

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