JOURNAL ARTICLE

Removal of zirconium from aqueous solution by modified clinoptilolite

H Faghihian, M Kabiri-Tadi
Journal of Hazardous Materials 2010 June 15, 178 (1): 66-73
20185237
Adsorptive behavior of natural clinoptilolite was assessed for the removal of zirconium from aqueous solutions. Natural zeolite was characterized by X-ray diffraction, X-ray fluorescence, thermal methods of analysis and FTIR. The zeolite sample composed mainly of clinoptilolite and presented a cation exchange capacity of 1.46 meq g(-1). K, Na and Ca-exchanged forms of zeolite were prepared and their sorption capacities for removal of zirconium from aqueous solutions were determined. The effects of relevant parameters, including initial concentration, contact time, temperature and initial pH on the removal efficiency were investigated in batch studies. The pH strongly influenced zirconium adsorption capacity and maximal capacity was obtained at pH 1.0. The maximum removal efficiency obtained at 40 degrees C and equilibration time of 24h on the Ca-exchanged form. Kinetics and isotherm of adsorption were also studied. The pseudo-first-order, pseudo-second-order, Elovich and intra-particle diffusion models were used to describe the kinetic data. The pseudo-second-order kinetic model provided excellent kinetic data fitting (R(2)>0.998) with rate constant of 1.60x10(-1), 1.96x10(-1), 2.45x10(-1) and 2.02x10(-1)g mmol(-1)min(-1) respectively for Na, K, Ca-exchanged forms and natural clinoptilolite. The Langmuir and Freundlich models were applied to describe the equilibrium isotherms for zirconium uptake and the Langmuir model agrees very well with experimental data. Thermodynamic parameters were determined and are discussed.

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