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Aqueous Reactions of Specific Organic Compounds with Ozone

Waste Water Treatment

  1. James B. Duncan

Published Online: 15 JUL 2005

DOI: 10.1002/047147844X.ww31

Water Encyclopedia

Water Encyclopedia

How to Cite

Duncan, J. B. 2005. Aqueous Reactions of Specific Organic Compounds with Ozone. Water Encyclopedia. 1:765–766.

Author Information

  1. Kennewick, Washington

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 JUL 2005


Ozone is an allotropic form of oxygen and exists as a pale-blue gas (O3) with a pungent odor. It is very reactive chemically and decomposes without difficulty (2O3 [RIGHTWARDS ARROW] 3O2). Ozone is used for

  • Disinfection and for taste and odor control

  • Control of excessive color

  • Oxidation of iron and manganese

  • Oxidation of organics

  • Flocculation aid

  • Does not form trihalomethanes (THMs)

Ozone-induced oxidations in aqueous environments can generally be described in the sequence of reactions; usually these reactions are highly selective and demonstrate slow kinetics, on the order of minutes. Part of the ozone will decompose before reaction with solutes leading to free radicals. Among the free radicals, the hydroxyl radical is one of the most reactive oxidants, which can easily oxidize all types of organic contaminants along with several inorganic solutes. Ozone is reactive with alkene and alkyne bonds and is strongly influenced by electron density at the site(s) of attack. Reactions of ozone with aromatics substituted with electron donor groups (OH, CH3, and NH2) are exacerbated. However, aromatics substituted with electron withdrawing groups (COOH and NO2) are retarded.


  • ozone;
  • oxidation;
  • water treatment;
  • organic reactions;
  • alkene;
  • alkyne;
  • aromatic