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J Colloid Interface Sci. 2003 Apr 1;260(1):166-75.

Interaction of the zeolitic tuff with Zn-containing simulated pollutant solutions.

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  • 1Faculty of Chemical Technology, The University of Split, Teslina 10/V, 21000 Split, Croatia. mtrgo@ktf-split.hr


The possibility of removing Zn2+ cations from wastewater by ion exchange using natural zeolites as exchangers has been investigated. The process of binding of zinc ions into zeolite structure has been established by several reaction mechanisms as a fast chemical reaction of ion exchange, accompanied by slower adsorption of different ionic species and possible precipitation or coprecipitation with the zeolite structure. The physicochemical phenomena such as hydrolysis and dissolution of surface layers are the result of interaction of zeolite with hydrogen or hydroxyl ions from the solution. Complexation of OH- with Zn2+ to form the zinc-hydroxy species strongly depends on pH value and affect the uptake mechanism as to lower dissolution of surface aluminosilicate layers. Structure imperfections as a surface property of mineralogical nonhomogeneous zeolitic grains can lead to formation of sorption surface sites with different energy, which affects the nonuniform distribution of different zinc species adsorbed. It is particularly possible in zeolitic tuff samples with relatively high content of aluminosilicates as minor mineralogical components, which is characteristic of Croatian deposits.

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