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Chemosphere. 2008 May;71(11):2113-20. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2008.01.016. Epub 2008 Mar 10.

Impacts of charcoal characteristics on sorption of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.

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  • 1Key Laboratory of Environmental Pollution Process and Standard (Nankai University), Ministry of Education, College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071, China.


Sorption of three polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs, phenanthrene, anthracene and pyrene) on three charcoals and their precursor substance (sawdust) was studied. The charcoals obtained by heating at 400 degrees C for different periods were different in chemical composition and structure. Sorption characteristics were described by a Polanyi-Dubinin-Manes model combined with poly-parameter linear free energy relationships. The results revealed that though partition could not be neglected for sawdust and charcoal containing large sawdust residue, adsorption controlled the sorption of PAHs on matured charcoals, where pi-pi electron donor-acceptor (EDA) exerted as the main molecular-scale interactions. Charring elevated partition coefficients (K(oc)) of the three PAHs more than one order of magnitude, which ranged from 10(5.74) to 10(6.58) on charcoals (for PAHs at equilibrium concentration C(e)=0.005S(w)). Adsorption increased with the aromaticity of the charcoals, however, polar aromatic structure may stimulate sorption of PAHs due to the presence of pi-pi EDA interactions.

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