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Adsorption of hydraulic fracturing fluid components 2-butoxyethanol and furfural onto granular activated carbon and shale rock

Manz, Katherine E., Haerr, Gregory, Lucchesi, Jessica, Carter, Kimberly E.
Chemosphere 2016 v.164 pp. 585-592
activated carbon, adsorption, furfural, models, shale, sodium chloride, sorption isotherms, surfactants, temperature
The objective of this study was to understand the adsorption ability of a surfactant and a non-surfactant chemical additive used in hydraulic fracturing onto shale and GAC. Experiments were performed at varying temperatures and sodium chloride concentrations to establish these impacts on the adsorption of the furfural (a non-surfactant) and 2-Butoxyethanol (2-BE) (a surfactant). Experiments were carried out in continuously mixed batch experiments with Langmuir and Freundlich isotherm modeling. The results of the experiments showed that adsorption of these compounds onto shale does not occur, which may allow these compounds to return to the surface in flowback and produced waters. The adsorption potential for these chemicals onto GAC follows the assumptions of the Langmuir model more strongly than those of the Freundlich model. The results show uptake of furfural and 2-BE occurs within 23 h in the presence of DI water, 0.1 mol L−1 sodium chloride, and in lab synthesized hydraulic fracturing brine. Based on the data, 83% of the furfural and 62% of the 2-BE was adsorbed using GAC.