The extraction efficiency of heavy metals from soils using three forms of gamma poly-glutamic acid (γ-PGA) as the washing agents was investigated. Controlling factors including agent concentrations, extraction time, pH, and liquid to soil ratio were evaluated to determine the optimum operational conditions. The distribution of heavy metal species in soils before and after extraction processes was analyzed. Up to 46 and 74% of heavy metal removal efficiencies were achieved with one round and a sequential extraction process using H-bonding form of γ-PGA (200 mM) with washing time of 40 min, liquid to solid ratio of 10 to 1, and pH of 6. Major heavy metal removal mechanisms were (1) γ-PGA-promoted dissolution and (2) complexation of heavy metal with free carboxyl groups in γ-PGA, which resulted in heavy metal desorption from soils. Metal species on soils were redistributed after washing, and soils were remediated without destruction of soil structures and productivity.
Environmental Science and Pollution Research – Springer Journals
Published: May 20, 2017
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