Characteristic: Tetrachloroethene (PCE = perchlorethene) is colorless volatile liquid, very stable and fire-resistant. It is used for dry cleaning of fabrics. Nowadays, more than 80% chemical drycleaners use PCE. More than 95% PCE is recycled due to the better technologies, therefore its production is reduced.
Applications: PCE is widely used for dry cleaning of fabrics. Further it is used for degreasing in industry, as a diluents for overspray and also as a filling for fire-extinguisher. PCE was used as insecticidal agent against insect pest impugning the corn. In context with its influents dangerous to health, PCE is used in very small amounts and in some countries (e.g. USA) the using of PCE is stopped.
Toxicity: PCE is carcinogenic and affects the central nervous system. PCE dehydrates the skin and makes it dry and vulnerable, because it dissolves the fat. In frequent contact with skin PCE can cause eczema or dermal inflammation.
Reaction with iron: Chlorinated ethenes are toxic substances which belong to the most common pollutants in the ground water, degrading for very long time in environment. The effectiveness of chlorinated ethenes removal from water using zero-valent iron was tested by J. Hanuš, Technical University in Liberec, Czech Republic in 2009. Many thanks to Doc. Dr. Ing. Miroslav Černík, CSc. and Ing. Bc. Štěpánka Klímková for providing this information.
Following figures show reactions with nanoscale zero-valent iron ~2g/l (after 20 days since application there is still the rest of nZVI) modified by rape oil, CMC = CarboxyMethyl Cellulose nad AX = Axilate (Polyacrylic acid).
PCE reduction by modified nZVI (dry nZVI powder NANOFER 25P dispersed in oil by laboratory dispersing unit DL 05).
PCE reduction by modified nZVI slurry products NANOFER 25 and NANOFER 25S.