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The adsorption behavior of Cu(II), Pb(II), and Co(II) of ethylene vinyl acetate-clinoptilolite nanocomposites

Authors

  • T. S. Mthombo,

    1. Department of Chemical Technology, University of Johannesburg, Doornfontein 2028, Johannesburg, South Africa
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  • A. K. Mishra,

    Corresponding author
    1. UJ Nanomaterials Science Research Group, Department of Chemical Technology, University of Johannesburg, Doornfontein 2028, Johannesburg, South Africa
    • UJ Nanomaterials Science Research Group, Department of Chemical Technology, University of Johannesburg, Doornfontein 2028, Johannesburg, South Africa===

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  • S. B. Mishra,

    1. Department of Chemical Technology, University of Johannesburg, Doornfontein 2028, Johannesburg, South Africa
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  • B. B. Mamba

    1. Department of Chemical Technology, University of Johannesburg, Doornfontein 2028, Johannesburg, South Africa
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Abstract

In this study, ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) was mixed with clinoptilolite (C), a natural zeolite, to prepare EVA-C nanocomposites. The films were characterized by SEM-EDS, XRD, and FT-IR, and heavy metal removal was studied using the batch technique. The effects of the initial pH value and concentration of solutions, contact time, and filler dosage on the adsorption capacity of the composites were investigated. To study the influence of pretreatment on the filler, clinoptilolite was activated using KCl, NaCl, and HCl. Adsorption results show that equilibrium was reached after 24 h, and that sorption reached its maximum at pH values between 5 and 7. The selectivity trend was observed to be Pb > Cu > Co, which was consistent for both single and mixed metal-ion solutions. Pretreatment significantly increased adsorption capacity of the composite, but was dependent on the conditioning reagent. Nanocomposites filled with HCl-activated particles demonstrated a high adsorption capacity of between 70 and 80% for all three metals, while KCl-activated particles were the least efficient with a maximum adsorption capacity of 69% for Pb(II), 54% for Cu(II) and 48% for Co(II). The adsorption data were then fitted to both Langmuir and Freundlich isotherms over the entire concentration range, and the Langmuir isotherm showed a better fit of the experimental sorption data than the Freundlich isotherm. The results obtained show that this simple methodology which can be up-scaled has great potential for the preparation of a wide variety of similar particle-filled adsorbent nanocomposites in other environmental remediation applications. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2011

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