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Cerium dioxide and composites for the removal of toxic metal ions

Sharon Olivera, K. Chaitra, Krishna Venkatesh, Handanahally Basavarajaiah Muralidhara, Inamuddin, Abdullah M. Asiri, Mohd Imran Ahamed
Environmental chemistry letters 2018 v.16 no.4 pp. 1233-1246
adsorbents, adsorption, arsenic, cadmium, catalytic activity, ceric oxide, cerium, chromium, cost effectiveness, decontamination, drinking water, fluorides, human health, kinetics, lead, mercury, metal ions, moieties, porosity, semiconductors, sorption isotherms, surface area, toxicity, water pollution, water treatment
The presence of contaminants in potable water is a cause of worldwide concern. In particular, the presence of metals such as arsenic, lead, cadmium, mercury, chromium can affect human health. There is thus a need for advanced techniques of water decontamination. Adsorbents based on cerium dioxide (CeO₂), also named ‘ceria,’ have been used to remove contaminants such as arsenic, fluoride, lead and cadmium. Ceria and composites display high surface area, controlled porosity and morphology, and abundance of functional groups. They have already found usage in many applications including optical, semiconductor and catalysis. Exploiting their attractive features for water treatment would unravel their potential. We review the potential of ceria and its composites for the removal of toxic metal ions from aqueous medium. The article discusses toxic contaminants in water and their impact on human health; the synthesis and adsorptive behavior of ceria-based materials including the role of morphology and surface area on the adsorption capacity, best fit adsorption isotherms, kinetic models, possible mechanisms, regeneration of adsorbents; and future perspectives of using metal oxides such as ceria. The focus of the report is the generation of cost-effective oxides of rare-earth metal, cerium, in their standalone and composite forms for contaminant removal.