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Adsorption study of environmentally relevant concentrations of chlortetracycline on pinewood biochar

Taheran, M., Naghdi, M., Brar, S.K., Knystautas, E.J., Verma, M., Ramirez, A.A., Surampalli, R.Y., Valero, J.R.
The Science of the total environment 2016 v.571 pp. 772-777
active ingredients, adsorbents, adsorption, aqueous solutions, biochar, chlortetracycline, electrostatic interactions, environmental impact, pH, scanning electron microscopy, sorption isotherms, wastewater, zeta potential
The presence of pharmaceutically active compounds (PhACs) in water and wastewater has raised concerns because of potential environmental impacts and thus their removal is of high importance. The adsorption behavior of chlortetracycline (CTC) from aqueous solution on raw and activated pinewood biochar was studied at 298 K. The effect of initial pH of the solution was studied by performing the experiment at three different pHs (1, 5 and 9). At each pH, CTC showed varied electrostatic charge (+1, 0 and −1, respectively) which affected its adsorption. The results indicated that CTC followed Langmuir isotherm and the related parameters were calculated. Also, it was observed that the maximum adsorption occurred at pH1. The adsorption capacity of CTC for raw and activated biochar was at least 2.1 and 208.3mg/g adsorbent, respectively. The characteristics of biochars were studied using zeta potential analyzer, laser size analyzer and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The results showed that raw and activated biochars are promising candidates for removal of CTC from water due to the acidic character of pinewood that can result in better interaction with ionizable compounds at lower pHs.