Magnetisation of carbonaceous adsorbents using iron oxides has been found to be one of the potential solutions for easy recovery of adsorbent after use. We evaluated the effects of Fe3O4 nanoparticle addition on the physico-chemical properties of biochar and its sorption properties. Five adsorbents with varying amount of Fe3O4 per mass of adsorbent (0%, 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%) were used to adsorb sulfamethoxazole (SMX), an emerging micropollutant. Five isotherm models were used to evaluate the sorption behaviour of SMX onto the adsorbents where Redlich-Peterson model was found to best describe the data. Based on this model, the approximate site energy distribution for each adsorbent was determined. Surface area and sorption capacity had strong negative linear relationship with the amount of Fe3O4 per mass of adsorbent while the pore volume and saturation magnetisation of the adsorbent increased with increasing percentage of Fe3O4. The results of the approximate site energy distribution analysis showed that the addition of Fe3O4 on biochar reduced the area under the frequency distribution curve of sorption site energies leading to the lowering of the sorption sites available for SMX. This could be attributed to the blockage of the hydrophobic surface of biochar reducing the hydrophobic interaction between SMX and biochar.
Environmental Pollution – Elsevier
Published: Feb 1, 2018
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