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J Environ Manage. 2019 Feb 1;231:886-895. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2018.10.052. Epub 2018 Nov 10.

Phytoremediation of highly contaminated mining soils by Jatropha curcas L. and production of catalytic carbons from the generated biomass.

Author information

1
Departamento de Ingeniería Química, Facultad de Química, Universidad de Sevilla, C/ Profesor García González, 1, 41012, Seville, Spain.
2
Departamento de Ingeniería Química, Facultad de Química, Universidad de Sevilla, C/ Profesor García González, 1, 41012, Seville, Spain. Electronic address: jfgarmar@us.es.

Abstract

This paper deals with the removal of heavy metals from marginal soil mixtures from the Cobre Las Cruces and Aznalcóllar mining areas containing high concentrations of metals (Cr, Fe, Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd, Hg, Pb and As) by means of phytoremediation using Jatropha curcas L., and the subsequent production of biocatalysts from the plant biomass. First, J. curcas L. was sowed in eight mixtures of these mining soils to study its adaption to these high-contaminated soils and its growth during 60 days in a greenhouse under conditions simulating the South of Spain's spring climate. Later, the most suitable soil mixtures for plant growth were used for 120-day phytoremediation under the same conditions. Heavy metal concentration in soils, roots, stems and leaves were measured by ICP-OES at the beginning, at the middle and at the end of the phytoremediation period, thus calculating the translocation and bioaccumulation factors. J. curcas L. was found to absorb great amounts of Fe (>3000 mg kg-1 plant) as well as notable amounts of Pb, Zn, Cu, Cr and Ni, and traces of As. Other metals with lower initial concentrations such as Cd, Hg and Sn were completely removed from soils. Finally, the plant biomass was subjected to pyrolysis to obtain catalytic biocarbons, assessing the optimal temperature for the pyrolytic process by means of thermogravimetric analysis and Raman spectroscopy.

KEYWORDS:

Bioaccumulation; Jatropha curcas; Mining soils; Phytoremediation; Translocation factor

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