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Magnetic particles modification of coconut shell-derived activated carbon and biochar for effective removal of phenol from water

Hao, Zheng, Wang, Changhui, Yan, Zaisheng, Jiang, Helong, Xu, Huacheng
Chemosphere 2018 v.211 pp. 962-969
activated carbon, adsorbents, adsorption, biochar, coconuts, coprecipitation, energy-dispersive X-ray analysis, magnetism, mass transfer, phenol, sorption isotherms, surface area
The separation and recovery of pollutant-loaded magnetic carbon materials from organic contaminated environment is recently concerned, but the change of sorption ability and mechanism of activated carbon and biochar caused by magnetic particles modification still need to be explored. Here, the magnetic modification of two coconut shell-, coal-derived activated carbon and one biochar, and its effect on the removal of phenol from water were investigated. Magnetic activated carbon (MAC) and magnetic biochar (MBC) were prepared by co-precipitation. The increase of mass magnetic susceptibilities and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) analysis showed that magnetic particles were successfully coated on the surface of virgin carbonaceous materials (VCMs). Magnetic modification enhanced the surface area and pore volume of activated carbon, and preserved those structure properties of biochar. Magnetic activated carbon had lower adsorption rates (10.641 g mg⁻¹·min⁻¹) than virgin activated carbon (20.575 g mg⁻¹·min⁻¹) while magnetic biochar exhibited higher adsorption rate (0.618 g mg⁻¹·min⁻¹) compared with virgin biochar (0.040 g mg⁻¹·min⁻¹), which were related to mass transport process. Data from Langmuir model results suggested that maximum adsorption capacities of three carbon adsorbents were increased by magnetic modification. The enhanced removal of phenol after magnetizing process may attribute to the increase of specific surface area and pore volume. Among VCMs/MCCs, magnetic coconut shell-derived carbon material with 951.84 m²/g surface area exhibited the most organic contaminant sorption performance. This finding gives insight into the adsorption mechanism of magnetic AC/BC for phenol, and provides a guidance to choose the appropriate magnetic composites to remove the organic contaminant effectively.