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Fenton's Reagent


Fenton's Reagent - "Fenton's reagent, a solution of hydrogen peroxide and ferrous iron catalyst, is used for an in-situ chemical oxidation of organic contaminants." - Seol and Javandel, 2008

Fenton's Reagent - "[A] chemical oxidant utilized for subsurface remediation ... [and] facilitate[s] the abiotic oxidation of the contaminants ... Fenton's Reagent is a mixture of hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and ferrous iron salts that reacts to form hydroxyl radicals (HO•), ferric iron (Fe3+), hydroperoxyl radicals (HO2•) (Walling, 1975), and/or superoxide radicals (O2-) (Smith and others, 2002)." - Waddell and Mayer, 2003

Fenton's Reagent - "Remediation of soil and groundwater contaminated with organic contaminants is accomplished by injecting a strong chemical oxidizer, like a mixture of hydrogen peroxide, together with a catalyst, ferrous sulfate and an optimum pH (3-5) adjester, using sulfuric acid. This particular reagent mixture is called Fenton's Reagent (FR), which was discovered by H.J.H. Fenton in 1894; hereafter named as Fenton's Reagent Oxidation Process (FROP) ... Concentrated pumping of FR into the area was done in order to oxidize/destroy those contaminants to the maximum extent possible." - Naval Facilities Engineering Command, 1999

Text in brackets ("[text]") are additions by the editor

Related Definitions

Chemical Oxidation - "Use of strong oxidants to destroy organic contaminants. The process works best on compounds, such as olefins and substituted aromatics, that contain unsaturated carbon-carbon bonds. Several chemical combinations can be used: peroxide, peroxide and iron (Fenton's reagent), ozone, hydrogen peroxide and ozone (peroxone), and potassium permanganate." - National Research Council, 1997

USGS Information on Chemical Oxidation of Contaminants

Related Science Feature Articles

More Information


National Research Council, 1997, Innovations in ground water and soil cleanup--From concept to commercialization: Washington, D.C., National Academies Press, 310 p. 

Naval Facilities Engineering Command, 1999, In-situ chemical oxidation of organic contaminants in soil and groundwater using Fenton's reagent: Naval Facilities Engineering Service Center Tech Data Sheet, 4 p.

Seol, Y., and Javandel, I., 2008, Citric acid-modified Fenton's reaction for the oxidation of chlorinated ethylenes in soil solution systems: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, 21 p.

Smith, B.A., Watts, R.J., and Atkinson, D.A., 2002, Destruction of DNAPLs by modified Fenton's Reagent, in Gavaskar, A.R., and Chen, A.S.C., eds., Third International Conference on Remediation of Chlorinated and Recalcitrant Compounds, Monterey, California, May 20-23, 2002: Columbus, Ohio, Battelle Press, Inc.

Waddell, J.P., and Mayer, G.C., 2003, Effects of Fenton's Reagent and potassium permanganate application on indigenous subsurface microbiota--A literature review, in Hatcher, K.J., ed., 2003 Georgia Water Resources Conference, University of Georgia, April 23-24, 2003: Athens, Georgia.

Walling, C.W., 1975, Fenton's reagent revisited: Accounts of Chemical Research, v. 8, no. 4, p. 125-131.


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