Adsorption of Cr (VI) pollutants in water using natural and modified attapulgite clay

22 Jul 2020

Attapulgite clay also known as palygorskite is a mineral clay which possess good adsorption properties based on its adsorption capacity, porous structure and moderate cation exchange properties. The study investigated the effectiveness of naturally occurring and hydrochloric acid modified attapulgite as adsorbents for Cr (VI) remediation in wastewater. The physical properties of the clay were characterized using a range of techniques. X-ray diffraction confirmed the purity of the clay while BET analysis indicated an increase in surface area from 131.4 to 183.2 m2/g after acid modification. The modified attapulgite was predicted to have an adsorption capacity of 75 mg/g compared to 2.1 mg/g for the naturally occurring attapulgite. The increase in adsorption capacity was attributed to a change in surface area as well as changes in the surface chemistry of the clay. The adsorption isotherms were best described by the Langmuir mono-layer adsorption model while the kinetics fit the Langren first order kinetics model.