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Ecotoxicol Environ Saf. 2018 Jul 15;155:1-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ecoenv.2018.02.043. Epub 2018 Feb 24.

Modification of zeolite 4A for use as an adsorbent for glyphosate and as an antibacterial agent for water.

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Department of Applied Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Maragheh, Maragheh, Iran. Electronic address:
Department of Applied Chemistry, Faculty of Science, University of Maragheh, Maragheh, Iran.
Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Science, University of Maragheh, Maragheh, Iran.


The aim of this work was to design a low cost adsorbent for efficient and selective removal of glyphosate from water at neutral pH conditions. For this purpose, zeolite 4A, a locally abundant and cheap mineral material, was ion-exchanged with Cu2+ to produce Cu-zeolite 4A. The FTIR results revealed that the modification has no important effect on chemical structure of zeolite 4A. After modification, highly crystalline zeolite 4A was converted to amorphous Cu-zeolite 4A according to XRD studies. The SEM images showed spherical-like particles with porous surfaces for Cu-zeolite 4A compared to cubic particles with smooth surfaces for zeolite 4A. Adsorption equilibrium data were well fitted with non-linear forms of Langmuir, Freundlich and Temkin isotherms. The maximum adsorption capacity for Cu-zeolite 4A was calculated to be 112.7 mg g-1 based on the Langmuir model. The adsorption of glyphosate by the modified adsorbent had fast kinetics fitted both pseudo-first-order and pseudo-second-order models. A mechanism based on chemical adsorption was proposed for the removal process. The modified adsorbent had a good selectivity to glyphosate over natural waters common cations and anions. It also showed desired regeneration ability as an important feature for practical uses. The potential use of the developed material as antibacterial agent for water disinfection filters was also investigated by MIC method. Relatively strong antibacterial activity was observed for Cu-zeolite 4A against Gram-positive and Gram-negative model bacteria while zeolite 4A had no antibacterial properties. No release of Cu2+ to aqueous solutions was detected as unique feature of the developed material.


Adsorption; Antibacterial activity; Glyphosate; Water pollution; Zeolite 4A

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