1070-4272/02/7507-1191$27.00C2002 MAIK [Nauka/Interperiodica]
Russian Journal of Applied Chemistry, Vol. 75, No. 7, 2002, pp. 1191!1193. Translated from Zhurnal Prikladnoi Khimii, Vol. 75, No. 7,
2002, pp. 1215!1217.
Original Russian Text Copyright + 2002 by Blinov, Komarova, Polishchuk, Krivosheev, Rybal’chenko.
Sorption of Lower Alcohols with Activated Charcoals
E. M. Blinov, L. F. Komarova, S. A. Polishchuk,
P. A. Krivosheev, and T. A. Rybal’chenko
Polzunov Altai State Technical University, Barnaul, Russia
Received September 10, 2001; in final form, February 2002
Abstract-The features of sorption of ethanol, isopropanol, butanol, isobutanol, and tert-butanol with
activated charcoals under static conditions were studied.
Lower alcohols are widely used in paint and var-
nish industry, as chemicals, in production of phenyl-
siloxanes, photographic films, ascorbic acid, and
in other branches [1, 2]. Butanol, isobutanol, tert-
butanol, and isopropanol are environmental pollutants.
Here we report on the sorption of lower alcohols on
activated charcoals produced from birch wood and
from a blend of oak and beech wood (Kabardino-Bal-
The main characteristics of the char-
coals were determined previously  and are listed
in the table.
The characteristics of the sorbents listed in the
table demonstrate advantages of birch charcoal. It has
lower moisture content, larger pore volume, and
higher sorption capacity for iodine. However, in sub-
sequent experiments it was noted that birch charcoal
has lower mechanical strength than charcoal produced
from a blend of oak and beech wood.
In this work, we studied sorption of butanol,
tert-butanol, isopropanol, isobutanol, and ethanol
from aqueous solutions with the above charcoals. To
determine the time required to attain the static sorp-
tion capacity of the adsorbent, we studied the alcohol
sorption kinetics and sorption isotherms.
The concentrations of aqueous solutions were meas-
ured by gas3liquid chromatography on an LKhM-8
MD chromatograph equipped with a heat conductivity
detector. Porokhrom was used as a support. Poly-
ethylene glycols with molecular weights of 1000 and
2000 (PEG-1000 and PEG-2000) were used as sta-
tionary phases. The mixture composition was calcu-
lated using internal reference .
Since the solubility limit of butanol, which is the
least soluble in water, does not exceed 5.5 wt % (here-
Produced from the wastes of wood working industry and sub-
mitted by the ANITIM Joint-Stock Company.
inafter, %), to plot the kinetic curves, weighed por-
tions of activated charcoal (1 g) and 100 ml of aque-
ous solutions (0.8 and 5.5%) of the above alcohols
were shaken for 3 h at 20oC. The samples were with-
drawn at certain intervals. The results are presented
in Fig. 1.
Analysis of the curves shows that the sorption
capacity of birch charcoal for practically all alcohols is
higher than that of the charcoal produced from a blend
of oak and beech wood. Butanol is the most actively
sorbed from solutions (0.8 and 5.5%), and the second
sorbable is isobutanol. Ethanol is the least actively
sorbed from solutions (Figs. 1a, 1b). This is apparent-
ly due to this fact that substances readily soluble in
water are sorbed on charcoals less efficiently .
In sorption from 0.8% solution with charcoal pro-
duced from a blend of oak and beech wood, the sorp-
Main characteristics of activated charcoals
³ I ³ II
Bulk density, kg m
³ 224.48 ³232.87
True density, kg m
³ 428.91 ³450.61
Moisture content, wt % ³ 1.97 ³ 4.68
Total pore volume with respect ³ 4.42 ³ 4.11
to water, ml per 1 g of charcoal ³³
Total pore volume with respect to ace- ³ 2.18 ³ 1.64
tone, ml per 1 g of charcoal ³³
pH ³ 9.86 ³ 9.83
Total sorption capacity for iodine, g of³ 8.67 ³ 5.71
per 1 g of charcoal ³³
Ash content, % ³ 3.40 ³ 2.15
* (I) Birch charcoal and (II) charcoal produced from a blend of
oak and beech wood.