Optimizing Fenton-like process, homogeneous at neutral pH for ciprofloxacin degradation: Comparing RSM-CCD and ANN-GA

Marjan Salari, Mohammad Reza Nikoo*, Abdullah Al-Mamun, Gholam Reza Rakhshandehroo, Mehrdad Ghorbani Mooselu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


Antibiotics are considered among the most non-biodegradable environmental contaminants due to their genetic resistance. Considering the importance of antibiotics removal, this study was aimed at multi-objective modeling and optimization of the Fenton-like process, homogeneous at initial circumneutral pH. Two main issues, including maximizing Ciprofloxacin (CIP) removal and minimizing sludge to iron ratio (SIR), were modeled by comparing central composite design (CCD) based on Response Surface Methodology (RSM) and hybrid Artificial Neural Network-Genetic Algorithm (ANN-GA). Results of simultaneous optimization using ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA) revealed that at pH ≅ 7, optimal conditions for initial CIP concentration, Fe2+ concentration, [H2O2]/[Fe2+] molar ratio, initial EDTA concentration, and reaction time were 14.9 mg/L, 9.2 mM, 3.2, 0.6 mM, and 25 min, respectively. Under these optimal conditions, CIP removal and SIR were predicted at 85.2% and 2.24 (gr/M). In the next step, multilayer perceptron (MLP) and radial basis function (RBF) artificial neural networks (ANN) were developed to model CIP and SIR. It was concluded that ANN, especially multilayer perceptron (MLP-ANN) has a decent performance in predicting response values. Additionally, multi-objective optimization of the process was performed using Genetic Algorithm (GA) and Non-dominated Sorting Genetic Algorithm-II (NSGA-II) to maximize CIP removal efficiencies while minimizing SIR. NSGA-II optimization algorithm showed a reliable performance in the interaction between conflicting goals and yielded a better result than the GA algorithm. Finally, TOPSIS method with equal weights of the criteria was applied to choose the best alternative on the Pareto optimal solutions of the NSGA-II. Comparing the optimal values obtained by the multi-objective response surface optimization models (RSM-CCD) with the NSGA-II algorithm showed that the optimal variables in both models were close and, according to the absolute relative error criterion, possessed almost the same performance in the prediction of variables.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115469
JournalJournal of Environmental Management
Publication statusPublished - Sept 1 2022


  • Ciprofloxacin antibiotic
  • Homogeneous processes
  • Multi-objective optimization
  • Pharmaceutical compounds
  • Neural Networks, Computer
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Sewage
  • Hydrogen Peroxide
  • Edetic Acid
  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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