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Publication numberUS3869383 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 4, 1975
Filing dateNov 16, 1972
Priority dateNov 17, 1971
Publication numberUS 3869383 A, US 3869383A, US-A-3869383, US3869383 A, US3869383A
InventorsIsao Shimamura, Haruhiko Iwano
Original AssigneeFuji Photo Film Co Ltd
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Process for treating waste photographic processing solutions
US 3869383 A
Abstract
Ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions are effectively removed from waste photographic treating solutions by contacting the solutions with weakly basic anion exchange resins. Improved results are obtained with the free base form of the weakly basic anion exchange resin when contacting takes place in the presence of a compound having a buffering action at a pH of 7 to 9, e.g., in the presence of boric acid, metaboric acid or a water soluble borate. Upon regeneration of the anion exchange resin the eluted ions can be reused as a photographic processing solution, e.g., a bleaching solution, with the addition of make up components.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Unite tates Eatent [191 Shimamura et a1.

. Nov. 17, 197] inventors: Isao Shimamura; Haruhlko lwano,

both of Kanagawa, Japan Assighee: Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.,

Kanagawa, Japan Filed: Nov. 16, 1972 Appl( No.: 307,265

Foreign Application Priority Data Japan 46-92115 Dec. 30, 1971 Japan 46-63472 Mar. 6, 1972 Japan 47-22907 U.S. Cl 210/32, 210/34, 210/37, 423/367 Int. Cl B01d 15/06 Field of Search 75/101 BE, 210/24, 30, 210/34, 37, 32; 423/367,377

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Zappert .l 423/367 1 Mar. 4, 1975 3,253,920 5/1966 Rees et a1. 210/30 3,788,983 1/1974 Fries 210/37 OTHER PUBLICATIONS Chem. Abs, Ion-Exchange Capacity of Weak-Base Anion Exchangers Towards Complex Cyanides, V72, 1970, N0. 59556a.

Primary Examiner-Samih N. Zaharna Assistant E.\'aminer-lvars Cintins Attorney, Agent, or Firm--Sughrwe, Rothwell, Mion, Zinn & Macpeak- [57 ABSTRACT Ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions are effectively removed from waste photographic treating solutions by contacting the solutions with weakly basic anion exchange resins. Improved results are obtained with the free base form of the weakly basic anion exchange resin when contacting takes place in the presence of a compound having a buffering action at a pH of 7 to 9, e.g., in the presence of boric acid, metaboric acid or a water soluble borate. Upon regeneration of the anion exchange resin the eluted ions can be reused as a photographic processing solution, ag, a bleaching solution, with the addition of make up components.

18 Claims, No Drawings BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION 1. Field of the Invention The present invention relates to a process for treating and regenerating waste solutions from photographic treatments. Particularly, the present invention relates to a process for treating waste solutions containing ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions from photographic treatments.

2. Description of the Prior Art In some cases, a bleaching step is included in treatments for photographic materials. Bleaching is a treatment whereby materials such as silver formed by development are returned to ionic form using an oxidizing agent, and is included in treatments for silver halide color photosensitive materials and silver dye bleaching photosensitive materials and reduction treatments for photographic materials used for printing.

In general, ferricyanides such as potassium ferricyanide are used as the oxidizing agent in bleaching solutions. In some cases, potassium bichromate, iron chelates, quinones and copper salts are used as the oxidizing agent instead of the ferricyanides. However, the ferricyanides' are the most preferred bleaching agents from the view point of oxidizingpower, ease of bleaching and their stability. However, faults encountered in using bleaching solutions containing ferricyanides are that the deteriorated bleaching solution must be replaced and ferricyanide ions discharged by overflowing during the treatment or by rinsing after bleaching, and ferrocyanide ions resulting from reduced ferricyanide ions, produce cyano compounds by photochemical oxidation (see Behavior of Cyano Compounds in Water Ponds Gidrokhim. Materialy 37, 133 43 (1964) written by Yu. Yu. Lu'rc andV. A. Panova, and Toxidity of Ferroand Ferricyanide Solutions to Fish and Determinationof the Cause of Mortality" Trans. Am..

Fish Soc. 78, 192 (1948) written by'George Edgar and Morris Lipschuetz).

Such cyano compounds have a strong toxicity and if introduced into the environment exhibit a very harmful pollutant effect.

in the past, quite often waste solutions containing ferferrocyanide ions by regenerating such solutions. In

order to reuse a bleaching solution by regenerating, it has been suggested to-use persulfates (U.S. Pat. No. 2,944,895), ozone (French Pat. No. 2,01 5,461 iodine cyano compounds even though they are present in a small amount in the rinsing water. Ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions at such low concentrations can nonetheless be removed by the formation of precipitates by reacting them with iron salts, by electrodialysis, by reverse osmosis or by a combustion or pyrolysis method, etc.

The formation of precipitates by reaction with iron salts utilizes the reaction between ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions and iron ions to form Prussian blue. However, this method has the fault that it requires a long time for the sedimentation and large sedimentation apparatus because the particles of Prussian blue formed are very fine. Particularly in the case of a low ion concentration and a large quantity of water, such as with rinsing water, the precipitation method is difficult to carry out, and requires a large scale equipment.

Though the electrodialysis method and the reverse osmosis method are effective for treating solutions of a low concentration such as rinsing or washing water, they have the fault that the'necessary equipment is expensive. This fault is especially encountered in treating solutions having a large quantity of water such as rinsing water, i.e., the cost of the equipment becomes very high because large apparatus is required. Further, the

' cost of operation is high because of the large amounts method involves pyrolyzing wherein chemicals such as (British Pat. No.- l,229,077) and peracetic acid (French Pat. No. 2,005,207), etc.

However, even if regeneration is carried out using such processes, the ferricyanide ions and/or ferrocyanide ions are still carried in a washing bath, which is followed by a rinsing. Since the amount of the ferricyahave a very strong toxicity, it is necessary to remove the sodium hypochlorite are added to the waste solution followed by decomposition at high temperature. In the case of applying these methods to waste solutions from photographic treatments containing ferricyanide and /or ferrocyanide ions, very large heat sources are nec-. essary because of the large quantity of water involved.

' Further, theferricyanide ions will damage a combustion furnace because of their high oxidation ability. both a serious fault of the combustion or pyrolysis method.

On the other hand, with methods other than the combustion or pyrolysis method, the treatment of waste liquor results in a sedimentary residue or liquid waste. These products must-be treated to make them harmless, but this is very difficult. If the ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions contained in a photographic'waste liquorcould be recovered and reused as, e.g., a bleaching solution, this would be the best solution to this problem because ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions would not be discharged atall.

SUMMARY OFTHE INVENTION Accordingly, one object of the present invention is to provide an economical process for effectively removing ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions included in waste solutions resulting from photographic treatments.

Another object of this invention is to provide a process for recovering ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions contained in waste solutions from photographic treatments andre-using such ions in, e.g.. a bleaching solution.

As a result of many studies, the inventorshave found that weakly basic ion-exchange resins are extremely effective for removing ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions from such waste solutions, and further that in pr'oce'ssing such waste solutions (which have been usedfor aqueous alkali solution, e.g., an aqueous sodium hydroxide solution, and that the reduction in the ionexchanging capability of the regenerated resin is extremely small.

The inventors have further discovered that ferrocyanide and/or ferricyanide ions may be effectively removed from solutions with greatly increased efficiencies using the free base form ofa weakly basic anion exchange resin in the presence of a compound having a buffering action at a pH of from 7 to 9.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION Recently, processes for treating industrial waste solutions have been performed using ion-exchange resins to render the waste solutions harmless. .For example, there have been treatments of radioactive wastes in the atomic energy industry and treatments of waste solutions containing heavy metals inthe plating industry. It has not been known, however, to utilize ion-exchange resins for removing ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions in waste solutions from photographic treatments. Furthermore, there is no description regarding the ion exchange ability of ferricyanide ions in the literature which describes ion-exchange resins. A reason why the ion-exchange capability of ferricyanide ions with ionexchange resins has not been studied heretofore is because ion-exchange resins are considered to be very unstable to oxidation. In order to remove the ferricyanide ions, anion exchange resins are used which are more easily oxidized than cation exchange resins. Complex ions such as ferricyanide ions and ferrocyanide ions'are difficult to desorb from ion-exchange resins when they are adsorbed in the ion-exchange resins because of their having a large ion-exchange ability.

In general, available ion-exchange resins are roughly classified into the following four basic types.

Strongly acid cation-exchange resin Free acid type Salt type (exchange group: SO M. --CH- SO. M) Weakly acid cationcxchange resins Free acid type Salt type (exchange group: COOM) Strongly basic anion-exchange resins Free base type Salt type (exchange groupzENfXW Weakly basic anion-exchange resins Free base type Salt type (exchange group: NH =NH. N)

M in the above exchange groups represents a cation and X represents an anion. I

As a result of attempting the ion-exchange of ferricyanide ions and the ferrocyanide ions using anion exchange resins, the inventors found that weakly basic anion-exchange resins are very effective to accomplish such purpose.

Among the anion-exchange resins, strongly basic anion exchange resins'are commonly used. However, the inventors found that ferricyanide ions and ferrocyanide ions are adsorbed strongly in the ion-exchange resins if ion-exchange of ferricyanide ions or ferrocyanide ions is carried out using strongly basic anion exchange resins (which contain the ammonium group), and consequently it is difficult to regenerate the anion exchange resin even by treating it with hydrochloric acid,

sodium chloride or alkali hydroxide, or else if regeneration is possible, the ion-exchange ability of the regenerated ion exchange resins deteriorates greatly to only 10 to 40 wt percent of the ion-exchange ability of the fresh resin. On the other hand, inexamining the behavior of strongly basic anion-exchange resins in the presence of borate ion, the ease of regeneration of the ionexchange resin is not substantially improved, though the ion-exchange capability toward ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions does increases a little, and again the ion-exchanging capability of the regenerated resin reaches 10 40 percent that of the fresh resin. Furthermore, even when the strongly basic anion-exchange resin was used in the presence of strong acids such as sulfuric acid or hydrochloric acid, or organic acids such as acetic acid or citric acid, the ion-exchanging capability of the strongly basic anion exchange resin to ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions could not be substantially improved.

The inventors found, however, that when weakly basic anion exchange resins, which are not commonly used as compared to the strongly basic anion exchange resins, are used for the purposes of this invention. unexpectdly they are very effective in accomplishing the removal of ferricyanide ions and ferrocyanide ions. and ferricyanide ions and ferrocyanide ions adsorbed in the weakly basic anion exchange resins are easily separated by regeneration of the weakly basic anion exchange resin with aqueous solutions of of acids. alkalis or salts.

such as sodium hydroxide, potassium hydroxide. so-

dium carbonate, potassium carbonate or aqueous ammonia solutions. In fact, the lowering of the ionexchange ability of the weakly basic anion-exchange resins after regeneration is very small. usually less than 10 wt percent.

Since ion-exchange resins have the advantage that they can be reused by regenerating but are expensive. it is impossible in the economic sense to throw them away after use. Thus. it becomes possible for the first time to remove ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions included in waste solutions from photographic treat' ments by using weakly basic anion exchange resins.

The weakly basic anion-exchange resins used in the present invention are preferably styrenedivinylbenzene copolymers, methacrylatedivinylbenzene copolymers and phenolformaldehyde polycondensates having primary. secondary or tertiary amino groups as the ion-exchange group. Any weakly basic anion exchange resin can be used irrespective of the type of base part of the resins. the process of preparation, the degree of polymerization. structural shape or the method of preparation thereof, so long as it has at least a primary, secondary or tertiary amino group.

Typical available weakly basic anion exchange resins are Diaion WA-lO, WA-1 l, WA-20, WA-2l and WA-30 (produced by Mitsubishi Chemical Ind. Ltd.) Ambe'rlite IRA-45. IRA-93. lR-4B and lRP-SS (produced by Organo Co.) and DOWEX-44 (produced by Dow Chemical Co.). These materials are, of course. merely illustrative. In the following. the structural formulae of some of these materials arc shown.

, Diaion WA ae an:

In the above formulae m and it each represent an integer.

Among the weakly basic anion exchange resins used in the process of the present invention, resins which are more easy to regenerate are those having tertiary amino groups as the exchange group. Among these resins, the most preferred is Diaion WA-l0. WA-IO has the highest adsorption per unit volume of resin for ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions and can be regenerated most easily. WA-ll is a second preferred choice. In these resins, the amount of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions adsorbed based on the volume of the resins is largest, and the resins are most easy to regenerate.

Among the weakly basic anion exchange resins, there are free base type resins and salt type resins, and both types can be used in the process of the present invention. The salt type resins, in situ, can adsorb ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions, but must be treated with an alkali and then an acid for the regeneration of the resins. The acid treatment is conducted to convert the resins to the salt type. On the other hand, while the free base type resins have, in situ. a lower ion exchange capability to l'ericyanide and ferrocyanide ions they have the same capability when they are used in the presence of a material having a buffering capacity at a pH of from 7 to 9. The free base type resins need not be treated with an acid followed by an alkali treatment to regenerate them as with the salt type resins and they are commercially available, so they are generally used. The resins of the present invention are not, however, limited to the free base type resins.

As a compound having a buffering capacity at a pH of from 7 to 9 which greatly increases the usefulness of the free base form of the weakly basic anionic ion exchange resins used in the present invention, any com pound may be used. However, in the photographic field, the materials used are generally acids of acid salts. Examples of such materials are inorganic and organic acids and the salts thereof, such as phosphoric acid, water soluble phosphates, bicarbonates, organic carboxylic acids and salts thereof such as citric, tar taric, phthalic and acetic acid. Organic polycarboxylic acids and the salts thereof are preferred. Preferred salts are the alkali metal and ammonium salts, e.g., sodium and potassium salts. However, a most preferred class of materials for accomplishing such purpose, which class is exemplified in great detail at a latter point of this specification, comprises boric acid, metaboric acid and various borates such as sodium borate, potassium bortate, ammonium borate, sodium metaborate and like water soluble borates.

Usually the amount of buffering compound present ranges from about 1/10 to about 10" molar times the sum of the moles of ferricyanide "and ferrocyanide ions present. As will be explained later in greater detail. the buffering compounds can be added to the solution which is treated so that the buffering compound is present during Contact with the free base form of the weakly basic anion exchange resin.

Alkali materials are usually used to regenerate the resins exchanged by ferricyanide and/or t'errocyanide ions, typically in the form of an aqueous solution.

though alkalis, acids or salts may be used. As the alkali,

there may be used aqueous solutions ofalkali metal hydroxides such as sodium hydroxide and potassium hydroxide and alkali metal carbonates such as sodium carbonate and potassium carbonate or an aqueous ammonia solution, etc., can be used. In the caseof using the salt type resins, theyare sometimes regenerated by a strong acid such as hydrochloric acid or a strong acid salt such as sodium chloride.

The regenerants are generally used at a concentration of from about 1 to about 20 percent by weight, preferably 3 to 10 percent by weight, though preferred operation in the borate ion embodiment includes a minimim 2 percent concentration.

As the borate ion-containing compound to be used in the preferred embodiments of the present invention. boric acid, metaboric acid, sodium borate, potassium borate, ammonium borate, sodium metaborate or like water-soluble borates can be used. Boric acid and/or such borates may be added to a ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ion-containing waste solution which has been used for photographic processing, or may be in cluded in the photographic processing solution such as a bleaching solution, bleach-fixing solution or reducer. Boric acid and/or a water-soluble borate can be used in an amount ranging from about l/llI) to about 10" times the sum of the moles of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions contained in the waste solution used for photographic processing or photographic processing solution such as the bleaching solution, bleach-fixing solution, reducer, etc. Most preferably, boric acid and/or a water soluble borate is used in an amount of from l/S to 10 times the sum of the moles of ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions. The range in terms of borate ions is about 10" to about 10' rnol per one liter of the waste solution. I

The process of the present invention can be utilized for any waste solution containing ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions. Solutions containing a ferricyanide and alkali metal bromide are generally used as the bleaching solution for'silver halide color photosensitive materials and silver-dye bleaching type color photosensitive materials. In some cases, such bleaching solutions contain a pH adjusting agent such as potassium hydroxide, glacial acetic acid, potassium dihydrogen phosphate, sodium acetate or sodium hydrogen sulfate and potassium alum. Sometimes, ferrocyanide and ferricyanide ions are used in bleach-fixing baths in combination with a silver halide solvent such as thiosulfate, thiocyanate etc.

In the treatment of a photographic plate used for printing, a. Farmers reducer is sometimes used in order to retouch the images after development. Farmers reducer consists of a solution containing a ferricyanide such as potassium ferricyanide and sodium thiosulfate.

The rinsing or washing water used after treatment with such a bleaching solution, a bleach-fixing solution or a reducer etc. containing ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions, or the waste solution containing ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions brought into another bath, is passed through a layer of weakly basic anion exchange resin, by which the ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions which are noxious components can be removed.

Waste solutions having any concentration of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions can be treated bythe process of the present invention. Particularly,-waste solutions in which the sum of ferricyanide ions and ferrocyanide ions is below 2,000 ppm are most suitably treated, though in the borate ion embodiment efficient operation is achieved at concentrations up to 3,000 ppm. The efficiency ofthe treatment of the waste solutions containing below 2,000 ppm of ferricyanide ions and ferrocyanide ions is inferior with the, prior art method of removing such ions by forming precipitates by reaction with iron salts or the combustion method.

The ion-exchange process using-weakly basic anion exchange resins of the present invention exhibits its effect especially when treating waste solutions containing below 500 ppm total of ferricyanide ions and ferrocyanide ions (1,000 ppm for the borate ion embodiment), that is, a low concentrationwith which low economical efficiency is encountered if other methods are used. Accordingly, the process is particularly suitable for removing ferricyanideand/or ferrocyanide ions in the rinsing water after bleaching.

Any method or apparatus may be used in the presen invention for contacting the waste solution containing ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions with the weakly basic anion-exchange resin. In general, one forms a resin layer by packing the ion-exchange resin in a cylinder container and passing the waste solution downwardly through this resin layer. Of course, if desired, the waste solution may also be passed up through the layer of resin. By such methods the ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions can be continuously removed. If desired, the waste solution may be treated by adding the ion-exchange resin to stored waste solution using a batch treatment and then removing the resin by precipitating the same with stirring or by filtering. Howerver, it is generally preferred to use an ion-exchange resin layer because one advantage of this invention is that it may be practised continuously.

The aqueous alkali solution to be used for the regeneration may be brought into contact with the ionexchange resin in any manner. The foregoing methods of contacting the waste solution used for photographic processing with the ion-exchange resin can be applied per se in the regeneration. By the regeneration, ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions are removed from the ion-exchange resin, while a solution containing ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions is eluted therefrom. The waste solution from the regeneration contains ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions at a concentration generally as high as l0,000 100,000 ppm, which corresponds to about 10 to about g of potassium ferricyanide per one liter of the regeneration solution. Since the waste solution from the regeneration is concentrated in ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions, and

contains very low amounts of inorganic anions other than hydroxy ions, ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions can easily be removed therefrom by the process of pyrolysis or precipitation with iron salts, etc., if desired.

On the other hand, in a preferred embodiment the waste liquor from the anion exchange resin regeneration, whichcontains ferricyanide ion and/or ferrocyawith acid and the thus regnerated solutioncan be reused as bleaching liquid. The essential components to be added to the waste regeneration solution are the ferricyanide, e.g., potassium or sodium ferricyanide, and

the bromide. They can be added in an amount necessary for the bleaching solution..Since the bleaching solution composition is varied by the purposes thereof, the composition can be decided by one skilled in the art. The pH of the regeneration solution is usually adjusted to apH of fromabout 5 to about 9 by adding an acid. Adjustment is'usually necessary because the solu- I tion is at a higher pH due to alkali added for the regneration of the anion-exchange resin.

It is often preferred to add an oxidizing agent such as potassium persulfate to oxidize the ferrocyanide ion to tion is analyzed.

Of course, the waste liquor after the regeneration may be concentrated to separate, e.g., potassium ferricyanide and ferrocyanide, which can then be used to prepare the bleaching liquid. In this case, inorganic anions other than ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ion are preferably not contained in the waste liquor from the regeneration.

While the abovediscussion has been in terms of reuse as a bleaching solution, it will be apparent that-the regeneration solution can, on appropriate make-up, be

reused not only as a bleaching liquid but as a bleachingfixing liquid or a reducer, etc. Of course, such liquids would have to be ferricyanide based and while the make-up components would differ from those required for a bleach bath, the essential criterion would merely be to reproduce the original art-recognized composition, which will be within the skill of the art.

The process of the present invention has the follow ing advantages. (1) The equipment is small and cost of the equipment is low as opposed to large and expensive apparatus as is required in the electrodialysis method and in the reverse osmosis method. (2) The ionexchange resin can be used repeatedly because it can be regenerated. Accordingly, this process is very economical. (3) The electrodialysis method, the reverse osmosis method and the combustion and pyrolysis methods require a large source-of energy such as electricity, a heavy oil, etc., and the energy cost for operating these processes is high. On the contrary, the ionexchange process of the invention requires onlya small amount of chemicals as the regenerant, and the cost thereof is very low. (4) Since the processing is very simple, it does not require significant skills or large numbers of personnel. (5) Since a waste solution discharged fromthe resin by regenerating using the regenerant is concentrated so as to have 50 g/l. of ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide, it can be treated easily by precipitation, etc. (6) The waste liquor obtained by the regeneration contains ferricyanide ion and/or ferrocyanide ion of high concentration so that it may be reused. e.g.. as a bleaching liquid, whereby the harmful ferricyanide ion and ferrocyanide ion are not discharged at all and the waste liquor is re-used very economically. 1

The process of the present invention can-be applied to treatmentsof color-negative photosensitive materials, color reversal photosensitive materials, color papers and color positives etc. using a silver halide, color treatments such as a silver-dye bleaching method and other treatments using ferricyanides. The process can be applied irrespective ofthe concentration of ferricyanides. Accordingly, the process can by applied to all so lutions containing ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions such as bleaching solutions, bleach-fixing solutions, reducing solutions and rinsing water formed therefrom. Further; the process can be applied to a ferricyanide bath which is used for other objects except for bleaching as shown in US. Pat. No. 3,189,452 and rinsing water used thereafter. Furthermore, the process.

can be used in developing apparatus such as a cinema type automatic developingapparatus, a hanger type'automatic developing apparatus, a roll type automatic developing apparatus or a belt conveyor type automatic developing apparatus. i

The present invention will be illustrated in greater detail by the following examples.

EXAMPLE 1 ill) containing ion-exchange resins at a speed of 300 ml/min., respectively. Composition of bleaching solution:

Potassium ferricyanide 20.0g Potassium bromide l5.0g Borax 10.0g Boric acid 150g Sodium citrate 20.0g Sodium ferrocyanide 4.0g Water to make 1 liter In the same manner as described above. a solution prepared by diluting the above bleaching solution with 20 liters of water was then passed therethrough, and the quantity of liquid passed there through when ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ions began to pass through the system was measured.

The results obtained are shown in the following table. The values obtained after regenerating 5 times by a similar procedure are also shown.

lon-exchange resin Fresh After 1st After 5th regeneration regeneration Weakly basic anionexchange resin (Diaion WA-lO) 261. 25 l. 23 l.

Strongly basic anionexchange resin (Diaion SA-lOA) 17 5 l. 3 l.

. As is shown in the table, the ability of the weakly basic anion exchange resins of the invention to remove ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions is larger than that of the strongly basic anion exchange resin when fresh. and deterioration of the ability to remove ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions of the weakly basic anion exchange resin is very low.

EXAMPLE 2' A waste solution after bleaching and rinsing discharged from a hanger-type automatic developing apparatus' was passed through an ion-exchange resin layer. This ion-exchange resin layer was prepared by packing 2 liters ofa weakly basic anion exchange resin (WA-10) in a cylinder having a 112 cm inside diameter. The composition of the bleaching solution was the same as in Example 1. The rate of flow of the waste solution through the cylinder and resin was 8 l/min.

Waste solution after bleaching and rinsing which was r not passed through the ion-exchange resin layer con resin layer at 8 l/min. and analyzed after hours, neither ferricyanide nor ferrocyanide ions was detected in the treated waste solution. I

The above examples illustrate the basic form of the present invention. The Examples below illustrate the practice of preferred embodiments of the present invention.

EXAMPLE 3 The following examples show the importance of using a buffering compound as heretofore described when the process of the present invention is practiced using the free base form of the weakly basic anion exchange resin. As heretofore stated, it is most preferred to use boric acid, metaborioacid or water soluble borates. However, needless to say, the other buffering compounds as heretofore described can be used with success, as can other buffering compounds known to the art. However, since boric acid, metaboric acid or water soluble borates offer such excellent results, the use of such compounds will be illustrated in the following examples.

Two cylinders 4.5 cm in inside diameter were prepared, one of them being packed with 300 ml of a free base type weakly basic anion-exchange resin (trade name: Diaion WA-lO) and the other being packed with 300 ml of a strongly basic anion-exchange resin (trade name: Diaion SA-lOA). Farmer-s reducer having the following composition was diluted 2O times'with water and passed through the above-described ion-exchange resin-packed cylinders at a flow rate of 300 ml/min. The amount of diluted Farmers reduced flowed therethrough when ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ion was eluted (processing capability) was measured. Composition of Farmers reducer:

Solution A: Prepared by adding water to 37.5- g of Red prussiate to make 500 ml. of solution. Solution Bz Prepared by adding water to 480 g of Crystalline sodium thiosulfate to make 2 liters of solution.-

Immediately before application, 30 ml of solution A and 120 ml of solution B were mixed and water was added tomake '1 liter of solution.

The Farmers reducerthus contains 30 ml of solution A and 120 ml of solution B per one liter of aqueous solution. In other 'words, 500/30 (or 2,000/120) liter of the Farmers reducer contains 500 ml of solution A and 2 liter of solution B. As the waste solution, the Farmers reducer is further diluted 20 times with water.

Ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ion was detected by adding a dilute sulfuric acid solution containing 3 percent ferrous sulfate and conducting spectrophotometry in the visible light region. I

After ferrocyanide or ferricyanide ions were detected in the solution passed through the resin bed, the ionexchange resin was taken out, transferred into a beaker containing'SOO m1 of an aqueous 4 percent sodium hydroxide solution and left for 30 min., withoccasional stirring, to regenerate the resin. The ion-exchange resins were then washed with water, and again packed in their respective cylinders. Thereafter, a solution prepared by diluting the Farmers reducer 20 times was passed through the cylinders in the same manner as before at a flow rate of 300 ml/min. The amount passed when ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ion was eluted (processing capability) was measured.

The results obtained are tabulated in the following Table.

No. Processing capability New resin Reproduced resin Ion-exchange resin 1 Free base type weakly basic anion-exchange resin (Diaion WA-lO) l liter 1 liter 2 Strongly basic anionexchange resin (Diaion SA-lOA) 30 liter 8 liter As shown in the above table, the free base type weakly basic anion-exchange resin had almost no processing capability. While the strongly basic anionexchange resin had a small processing capability, it was greatly reduced after regeneration.

Next, two cylinders ofa 4.5 cm insidediameter were prepared, one of them being packed with 300 ml of a free base type weakly basic anion exchange resin (Diaion WA-lO), the other being'packed with 300 ml of a strongly basic anion-exchange resin (Diaion SA-lOA). A solution prepared by diluting the Farmers and the amount passed when ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ion was eluted (processing capability) was measured. The results are given in the following table.

No. Ion-exchange resin Processing capability New resin Reproduced resin 3 Free base type weakly basic anion-exchange resin (Diaion WA-lO) 200 liter liter 4 Strongly basic anionexchange resin (Diaion SA-lOA) 50 liter 15 liter As is shown in the above table, when the free base type weakly basic anion-exchange resin was used in the presence of boric acid according to. the preferred embodiment of the present invention, a large processing capability was obtained with less reduction in the processing capability after regeneration. On the other hand, when the strongly basic anion-exchange resin outside the present invention was used, the processing capability was far inferior to that in the method of the present invention even in the presence of boric acid and, in addition, the reduction in processing capability after reproduction was large.

From the results above, it can beunderstood that the removal of ferricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions contained in a diluted solution of Farmers reducer be.- comes possible only when a'free base type weakly basic anion-exchange resin is used in the presence of boric acid.

EXAMPLE 4 Exposed and developed photographic original printing plates as described in US. Pat. No. 3,345,175 were well wetted with water, immersed in the Farmers reducer having the following composition and then washed with water. As the plates were treated with Farmers reducer, the reducer was deteriorated, and it was replaced with a newFarmers reducer when it was deteriorated. The used Farmers reducer and water were the waste solution.

4 liters of a weakly basic anion-exchange resin (Diaion WA-lO) were packed in a resin cylinder of a 14 cm inside diameter. Waste solution of Farmers reducer was passed through the resin cylinder at a flow rate of 5 liter/min. I

Composition of Farmer's reducer:

First solution Water 200 ml Crystalline sodium thiosulfate 20 g Second solution Water 100 ml Red prussiate g centration offerricyanide and/or ferrocyanide ions contained in this Farmers reducer waste solution varies (as described, the Farmers reducer was replaced with a new Farmers reducer when it deteriorated, and

deterioration is determined by the experience of the process operator who is one skilled in the art so that the concentration of ions in the waste solution often varies) in the range of from about 0 to 200 ppm, the average sum of concentration of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions was 50 ppm. To this solution these was added 0.5 g/liter ofboric acid. Thereafter, the waste solution was passed through the foregoing ion-exchange resinpacked cylinder to measure the amount passed when ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ion was eluted (processing capability).-When ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ion was eluted, the resin was washed with water. Then, 10 liters of an aqueous 4 percent sodium hydroxide solution was passed through the' cylinder at a flow rate of 500 ml/min. to conduct regeneration thereof. After washing Processing capability New resin Regenerated resin 9.5 tons 9.0 tons As is shown in the above table, the processing capability in the method of the present invention is large.

The amount of the regenerated waste solution dis charged upon regeneration with an aqueous 4 percent sodium hydroxide solution was about 16 liter, and the sum of the concentrations of ferricyanide and ferrocya nide ions contained in the waste solution was about 30,000 ppm. From this result, it can be seen that ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions were concentrated about 600 times.

EXAMPLE 5 300 ml of a weakly basic anion-exchange resin (Diaion WA-lOO) was packed in a cylinder 4.5 cm in inside diameter. Farmers reducer having the following composition was diluted 20 times, and was passed through the above-described resin cylinder at a flow rate of 300 ml/min., and the amount eluted (processing capability) when .ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ions started to pass through the system was measured. Composition of Farmers reducer:

Solution A: Prepared by adding water to 37.5 g of Red prussiate to make 500 ml. of solution.

Solution B: Prepared by adding water to a mixture of 480 g of crystalline sodium thiosulfate, g of boric acid, and '10 g of sodium metaborate, to make 2 liters of solution.

immediately before use, 30 ml of Solution A and ml of Solution B are mixed, and water added thereto to make 1 liter of solution.

After ferricyanide or ferrocyanide ions were detected in the ion exchange resin effluent, the iomexchang'e resin was regenerated in the same manner as in Example 1. Then, the above-described solution prepared by diluting the Farmers solution 20 times was passed through the regenerated resin. The procedures of regeneration, passing diluted solution of Farmers reducer through the cylinder, regeneration, passing diluted solution of Farmers reducer, etc., were repeated, and the'results obtained are given in the following table.

Processing capability of ion-exchange resin New After After After After After resin first second third fourth fifth reproreproreproreproreproduction duction duction duction duction As is shown in the above table, when a weakly basic anion-exchange resin was used in the presence of borate ions according to thepresent invention, there was obtained amarkedly improved processing capability with less reduction in the capability of the resin even after repeated regenerations.

EXAMPLE 6 Composition of the bleaching solution:

Red prussiate 100 g Potassium bromide 30 g Water to make 1 liter.

A solution prepared by diluting the bleaching solution having the above-described composition and adding thereto 1.0 g/liter of boric acid, was passed through the other resin cylinder at a flow rate of 300 nil/min.

Additive to the diluted No. Processing capability bleaching solution New resin Regenerated resin 1 No additive 01 01 2 10 g/liter of boric acid As is shown in the above table, in the diluted bleaching solution not containing the boric acid the free base type weakly basic anion-exchange resin had absolutely no capability of ion-exchanging ferricyanide ion, and such became possible only when boric acid was added thereto to ion-exchange ferricyanide ion. When boric acid is added, the processing capability of the free base type weakly basic anion-exchange resin is remarkably increased with an extremely small reduction in the processing capability of thejresin after regeneration.

, EXAMPLE 7 300 ml of Weakly basic anion-exchange resintDiaion WA-l) were filled in a cylinder of a 4.5 cm inner diameter. A solution of bleaching liquid-having the following composition diluted with water to a 20-fold volume was passed at 300 ml/min through the resin cylinder. After passing 26 liters therethrough, ferricyanide ion began to discharge from the resin cylinder.

Composition of Bleaching Liquid:

Potassium Ferricyanide (K;,(Fe(CN) 200g Sodium Bromide (NaBr) 13.0 Sodium Borate (NagB or) 10.0 Boric Acid (H 80 15.0 Sodium Nitrate (NaNO 20.0 Sodium Ferrocyanide (Na (Fe(CN),,)3H O) 4.0 Water to make (pH: 7.70) 1 liter The passing of diluted bleaching liquid was then ceased and the resin was taken out and put in 'a beaker. 500 ml of an aqueous 3 percent sodium hydroxide solution were added thereto and the mixture permitted to stand for 30 min. and then filtered. The filtrate was mixed with the washing water for the resin to yield l l of waste liquor for the regeneration. 20 g of boric acid, ml of 6N nitric acid, g of sodium bromide and 4 g of potassium persulfate were added to the waste liquor, and then the volume raised to 1.2 l with water and the pH adjusted to 7.7. An analysis of the resulting solution showed it had the same composition as the original bleaching liquid. The solution was used as a bleaching liquid, and showed a sufficient bleaching effect and'other photographic performances were satisfactory.

EXAMPLE 8 The development of a color negative material as deusing a hanger type automatic developing machine. In this case, the waste washing water after bleaching was passed through an ion-exchange resin layer which comprised a cylinder of 10 cm in inner diameter filled with l l of weakly basic anion-exchange resin (Diaion WA-lO). The composition of the diluted bleaching liquid was the same as in Example 7. The washing water after bleaching was passed therethrough at 5 l/min. After operating the developing machine for 5 hrs, operation was ceased and regeneration was carried out with 1.3 l of an aqueous 3 percent sodium hydroxide solution. The anion exchange resin was then washed with 1.2 liters of water. The 1.8 liters of waste liquor after the regeneration was combined with the 1.2 liters of washing water'for the resin to yield 3 l of combined solution. Analysis of the solution showed 13.3 g of ferricyanide ion (Fe(CN) 8.8 g of ferrocyanide ion and 0.3 g of nitrate ion per liter. 2 g of potassium bromide,

92 g of boric acid, 95 g of sodium nitrate and 26 g of potassium persulfate were added to the solution, water was added to make the whole volume 4.8 l, and the pH was adjusted to 7.7. The solution was used as a bleaching liquid, and showed a sufficient bleaching effect and other photographic performances were satisfactory.

While the invention has been described in detail and with reference to specific embodiments thereof, it will be apparent to one skilled in the art that various changes and modifications can be made therein without departing from the spirit and scope thereof.

What is claimed is:

l. A process for treating a waste solution from a photographic treatment which'solution contains at least one of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions comprising contacting the waste solution having a pH of 7 to 9 with a weakly basic anion exchange resin in the free base form in the presence of a buffering compound added in an amount to maintain a buffering action at a pH of 7-9, thereby adsorbing said ions on said weakly basic anion exchange resin.

2. The process of claim 1 wherein said solution is contacted with said weakly basic anionv exchange resin I in the presence of borate ions.

3. The process of claim 2, wherein the borate ions are present in the solution treated. 4. The process of claim 3 where theborate ions are present in molar amount of from about N10 to about 10 times the sum of the moles of ferricyanide and. ferrocyanide ions.

5. The process ofclaim 1 further comprising regenerating said weakly basic anion exchange resin to remove at least one of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions adsorbed therein,.a regeneration solution being obtained from the regeneration which comprises an aqueous solution of at least one of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions, and reusing the components of the regeneration solution.

6. The process of claim 5 wherein the regeneration solution contains at least one of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions in an amount of from 10,000 to 100,000

7. The process of claim 5 wherein the regeneration solution is reused as a photographic processing'solujtion. I

8. The process of claim 7 where the processing solution is a bleaching solution. 4 v

9. The process of claim 8, where the bleaching solution comprises ferricyanide ions and bromide ions.

10. The process of claim 1 wherein the solution comprises a used bleaching solution, bleach-fixing solution,

reducing solution, or the wash water from washing a photographic element subjected to such a solution.

11. The process of claim 1, wherein the concentration of at least one. of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide is less than about 2,000 ppm.

12. The process of claim 1 further comprising regenerating said weakly basic anion exchange resin to desorb at least one of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions therefrom.

13. The process of claim 12 wherein regeneration is accomplished by contacting the weakly basic anion exchange resin with an alkaline material, thereby desorbing said at least one of ferricyanide and ferrocyanide ions.

14. The process of claim 1 wherein the weakly basic anion exchange resin contains exchange groups selected from the class consisting of NH =NH or N. 15. The process of claim 1 wherein the weakly basic anion exchange resin contains tertiary amino exchange groups.

16. The process of claim 1 wherein the weakly basic anion exchange resin contains primary, secondary or tertiary amino groups as the exchange group, and comprises a styrene-divinylbenzene copolymer, a methacrylate-divinylbenzene copolymer or a phenolformaldehyde condensate.

17. The process of claim 1 wherein the compound having a buffering action is present in a molar amount

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4043907 *Sep 13, 1974Aug 23, 1977Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.Process for treating waste photographic processing solutions
US4115260 *Apr 7, 1977Sep 19, 1978Rohm And Haas CompanySelective removal of iron cyanide anions from fluids containing thiocyanates
US4122007 *Apr 15, 1976Oct 24, 1978Catalysts & Chemicals Industries Co., Ltd.Reclaiming process for zeolite served for adsorbing ammoniacal nitrogen contained in sewage
US4267159 *Aug 8, 1980May 12, 1981Crane Co.Cyanide recovery
US4606827 *Jun 1, 1984Aug 19, 1986Konishiroku Photo Industry Co., Ltd.P p-phenylenediamine solution; cation exchange resin
US4618569 *Apr 10, 1985Oct 21, 1986Konishiroku Photo Industry Co., Ltd.Method for processing of silver halide color photographic material
US4632763 *Jun 17, 1985Dec 30, 1986Agfa Gevaert AktiengesellschaftRemoving hexacyanoferrate ions; acrylic anion exchanger with tertiary amino groups
US4680123 *Sep 30, 1985Jul 14, 1987Agfa Gevaert AktiengesellschaftRegeneration of spent developers
US4708804 *Jun 28, 1985Nov 24, 1987Resource Technology AssociatesMethod for recovery of cyanide from waste streams
US4985118 *Apr 23, 1990Jan 15, 1991Konica CorporationMethod for treating photographic process waste liquor through concentration by evaporation
US5004522 *Dec 20, 1989Apr 2, 1991Konica CorporationMethod of treating photographic process waste liquor through concentration by evaporation
US5011571 *Jan 8, 1990Apr 30, 1991Konica CorporationEvaporation
US5059514 *Dec 24, 1988Oct 22, 1991Fuji Photo Film Co., Ltd.Bleaching using promoter and subjecting waste liquid to anionic exchange resin
US5260184 *Apr 24, 1990Nov 9, 1993Eastman Kodak CompanyOxidatt removal by electrolysis at cathode, dialysis through semipermeable membrane, catalytic decomposition or by scavengers
WO1987000072A1 *Jun 27, 1986Jan 15, 1987Resource Techn AssMethod for recovery of cyanide from waste streams
Classifications
U.S. Classification430/430, 210/670, 430/400, 430/398, 210/667, 423/367, 430/399, 210/904
International ClassificationG03C5/395, B01D15/04, B01J41/04
Cooperative ClassificationG03C5/3956, Y10S210/904, B01J41/046
European ClassificationB01J41/04D, G03C5/395M