Simultaneous adsorption of Cd, Cr, Cu, Pb, and Zn by an iron-coated Australian zeolite in batch and fixed-bed column studies

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Chemical Engineering Journal, 2015, 270 pp. 393 - 404
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© 2015 Elsevier B.V. Excessive levels of heavy metals in water are an environmental hazard. An Australian zeolite with (ICZ) and without (Z) iron-coating, was used to remove five heavy metals from aqueous solutions using adsorption in batch and column experiments. The batch study showed that the Langmuir adsorption capacities of heavy metals on Z and ICZ at pH 6.5 and ionic strength 10-3M NaNO3 were in the order Pb>Cu>Cd>Cr, Zn for single metal (5.0-11.2mg/g) and for mixed metals solution (3.7-7.6mg/g). The data for the kinetics of adsorption satisfactory fitted to both the pseudo-first and second order models with fits slightly better for the latter model. Data fitted to a diffusion model revealed that adsorption took place in two or more than two different stages: a fast external surface adsorption, and a gradual adsorption controlled by both film diffusion and intra-particle diffusion. The column adsorption data were fairly well described by Thomas model, with the order of Thomas adsorption capacity following a similar trend as in the batch study. In both batch and column experiments, the adsorption capacities were higher for ICZ than for Z and were generally lower in mixed metals system than in single metals system. Leaching of used ICZ columns with 0.1M HCl, resulted in 64-93% of adsorbed metals being desorbed, and 10% of Fe being dissolved from the ICZ.
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