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Water Res. 2001 Oct;35(15):3724-8.

Sorption of lead ions on diatomite and manganese oxides modified diatomite.

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  • 1School of Chemical Engineering, The Queen's University of Belfast, UK.


Naturally occurring diatomaceous earth (diatomite) has been tested as a potential sorbent for Pb(II) ions. The intrinsic exchange properties were further improved by modification with manganese oxides. Modified adsorbent (referred to as Mn-diatomite) showed a higher tendency for adsorbing lead ions from solution at pH 4. The high performance exhibited by Mn-diatomite was attributed to increased surface area and higher negative surface charge after modification. Scanning electron microscope pictures revealed a birnessite structure of manganese oxides, which was featured by a plate-like-crystal structure. Diatomite filtration quality was improved after modification by manganese oxides. Good filtration qualities combined with high exchange capacity emphasised the potential use of Mn-diatomite in filtration systems.

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