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Adsorption of cadmium ions on oxygen surface sites in activated carbon

Lookup NU author(s): Emeritus Professor Mark ThomasORCiD


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Various types of oxygen functional groups were introduced onto the surface of coconut shell derived activated carbon by oxidation using nitric acid. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), temperature-programmed desorption (TPD), and selective neutralization were used to characterize the surface oxygen functional groups. The oxidized carbons were also heat treated to provide a suite of carbons where the oxygen functional groups of various thermal stabilities were varied progressively. The adsorption of cadmium ions was enhanced dramatically by oxidation of the carbon. The ratio of released protons to adsorbed cadmium ions on oxidized carbon was approximately 2, indicating cation exchange was involved in the process of adsorption. Na+ exchange studies with the oxidized carbon gave a similar ratio. After heat treatment of the oxidized carbons to remove oxygen functional groups, the ratio of H+ released to Cd2+ adsorbed and the adsorption capacity decreased significantly. Both reversible and irreversible processes were involved in cadmium ion adsorption with reversible adsorption having higher enthalpy. The irreversible adsorption resulted from cation exchange with carboxylic acid groups, whereas the reversible adsorption probably involved physisorption of the partially hydrated cadmium ion.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Jia YF, Thomas KM

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Langmuir

Year: 2000

Volume: 16

Issue: 3

Pages: 1114-1122

ISSN (print): 0743-7463

ISSN (electronic): 1520-5827

Publisher: American Chemical Society


DOI: 10.1021/la990436w


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