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Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2012 Jun;19(5):1687-95. doi: 10.1007/s11356-011-0666-2. Epub 2011 Dec 9.

Equilibrium, kinetic and thermodynamic studies on the biosorption of reactive acid dye on Enteromorpha flexuosa and Gracilaria corticata.

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Chemical Engineering Area, Central Leather Research Institute, Council of Scientific & Industrial Research, Adyar, Chennai, India.



Biosorption is an emerging, eco-friendly and economical method for treating the wastewater effluents. Compared to many other biological materials, algae biomass proved to be the better biosorbent due to the presence of cell wall polymers in them.


Algal biomasses namely Enteromorpha flexuosa and Gracilaria corticata were dried, crushed and used as biosorbents. Ponceau S, a diazo dye was used as a model adsorbate for the biosorption studies. The biosorbents were characterized by Scanning Electron Microscopy, FT-IR and zero point charge. Batch studies were performed by varying pH, biosorbent dosage and initial dye concentrations. Adsorption isotherms, kinetic and thermodynamic analyses were carried out. The effect of electrolytes was also studied. Batch desorption studies were also carried out using various reagents.


Isotherm data were tested with Langmuir and Freundlich isotherm models and the results suggested that the Freundlich isotherm fitted the data well. Kinetic studies were performed with varying initial dye concentrations and the data were incorporated with pseudo first-order and pseudo second-order kinetic equations and was found that the studied biosorption processes followed pseudo second-order kinetic equation. Thermodynamic parameters were evaluated at three different temperatures 293 K, 300 K and 313 K. About 95% of the dye could be desorbed from both the biosorbents.


Both the algal biomasses had heterogeneous surfaces and followed pseudo second-order chemical kinetics. Thermodynamic parameters proved that the biosorption by both the biomasses were spontaneous, feasible and endothermic processes. Desorption studies proved the worth of the algal biomasses as biosorbents in industrial level.

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