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Loofa egyptiaca as a novel adsorbent for removal of direct blue dye from aqueous solution

El Ashtoukhy, El Sayed Z.
Journal of environmental management 2009 v.90 no.8 pp. 2755-2761
cellulosic fibers, plant fibers, aqueous solutions, wastewater treatment, dyes, activated carbon, adsorbents, adsorption, sorption isotherms, pH, kinetics
In this paper, Loofa egyptiaca (LE), an agricultural plant cultivated in Egypt, was used to prepare low-cost activated carbon (LEC1 and LEC2) adsorbents. The adsorbents (LE, LEC1 and LEC2) were evaluated for their ability to remove direct blue 106 dye from aqueous solutions. Batch mode experiments were conducted using various parameters such as pH, contact time, dye concentration and adsorbent concentration. The surface chemistry of LE, LEC1 and LEC2 was analyzed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The experimental data were examined using Langmuir, Freundlich, Temkin and Harkins-Jura isotherms. The results showed that the adsorption of direct blue 106 was maximal at the lowest value of pH (pH = 2). Removal efficiency was increased with an increase in dye concentration and a decrease in amount of adsorbent. Maximum adsorption capacity was found to be 57.14, 63.3 and 73.53 mg/g for LE, LEC1 and LEC2 respectively. Kinetics were also investigated using pseudo-first-order, pseudo-second-order and intra-particle diffusion models. The experimental data fitted very well with the pseudo-first-order and pseudo-second-order kinetic models. The results indicate that LE, LEC1 and LEC2 could be employed as adsorbents for the removal of direct blue dye from aqueous solutions.