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J Environ Sci (China). 2013 May 1;25(5):1044-53.

Pb(II) removal from water using Fe-coated bamboo charcoal with the assistance of microwaves.

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State Key Laboratory of Pollution Control and Resources Reuse, College of Environmental Science and Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, China.


Bamboo charcoal (BC) was used as starting material to prepare iron-modified bamboo charcoal (Fe-MBC) by its impregnation in FeCl3 and HNO3 solutions simultaneously, followed by microwave heating. The material can be used as an adsorbent for Pb(II) contaminants removal in water. The composites were prepared with Fe molar concentration of 0.5, 1.0 and 2.0 mol/L and characterized by means of N2 adsorption-desorption isotherms, X-ray diffraction spectroscopy (XRD), scanning electron microscopy coupled with energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry (SEM-EDS), Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) and point of zero charge (pH(pzc)) measurements. Nitrogen adsorption analyses showed that the BET specific surface area and total pore volume increased with iron impregnation. The adsorbent with Fe molar concentration of 2 mol/L (2Fe-MBC) exhibited the highest surface area and produced the best pore structure. The Pb(II) adsorption process of 2Fe-MBC and BC were evaluated in batch experiments and 2Fe-MBC showed an excellent adsorption capability for removal Pb(II). The adsorption of Pb(II) strongly depended on solution pH, with maximum values at pH 5.0. The ionic strength had a significant effect on the adsorption at pH < 6.0. The adsorption isotherms followed the Langmuir isotherm model well, and the maximum adsorption capacity for Pb(II) was 200.38 mg/g for 2Fe-MBC. The adsorption processes were well fitted by a pseudo second-order kinetic model. Thermodynamic parameters showed that the adsorption of Pb(II) onto Fe-MBC was feasible, spontaneous, and exothermic under the studied conditions, and the ion exchange mechanism played an significant role. These results have important implications for the design of low-cost and effective adsorbents in the removal of Pb(II) from wastewater.

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