Removal of nitrate using synthetic nano composite ZnO/organoclay: Kinetic and isotherm studies

Document Type: Research Article


1 Department of Environmental Science, Faculty of Natural Resources and Environment, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, I.R. IRAN

2 Faculty of Chemistry, Tehran North Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, I.R. IRAN

3 Department of Environmental Engineering, Graduate Faculty of Environment, University of Tehran, Tehran, I.R. IRAN


This study was conducted to investigate organoclay prepared using montmorillonite clay with zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles and a long-chain organic surfactant hexadecyltrimethyl ammonium bromide for the removal of nitrate ion from aqueous solutions. Adsorbents were evaluated by X-Ray diffraction, Fourier Transform Infra Red, Transmission Electron Microscopy, Brunauer-Emmett-Teller, Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy, Energy Dispersive X-ray spectroscopy devices and adsorption isotherms of nitrate ion on the best adsorbent were measured at the aqueous concentrations of 40 to 150 mg/25cc. Activated montmorillonite-ZnO showed a much higher adsorption capacity than other materials. The laminated ZnO and modified surfactant enhanced nitrate ion, thus retaining silicates capacity, montmorillonite (17.24 mg/g) ˂ montmorillonite by laminated ZnO(54.05 mg/g) ˂ montmorillonite modified by surfactant (86.95 mg/g) ˂ montmorillonite loaded by ZnO and surfactant (119.92 mg/g). The adsorbents for the removal of nitrate ion were studied and then regenerated with HCl solution (0.1 M) to be reused in adsorption. Adsorption data of nitrate ion could be explained using Langmuir isotherm and pseudo-second-order kinetic model. Therefore, activation of montmorillonite/ZnOcould is used as a suitable adsorbent to separate nitrate ion from wastewater and groundwater.


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