Eco-friendly Elimination Of Heavy Metals From Wastewaters By Spent Tea Leaves | 18568
Journal of Earth Science & Climatic Change
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When mining industries do not discard residues properly, waste waters contaminated with heavy metals can negatively
affect living environments. Spent peppermint (PM) and green tea (GT) leaves were used as potential adsorbents of
copper (II) and zinc (II) ions in aqueous solutions. Equilibrium parameters such as acidity, mass of adsorbent, heavy metal
concentration, presence of crowding agents and salinity were studied to optimize the adsorption in batch experiments at room
temperature. Adsorbents were characterized by TGA, FTIR and SEM techniques and their surface and porosity determined by
wet experiments. It has been shown by experimental data that adsorption of copper (II) is maximized at pH 7 using PM with
an adsorbent mass of 100 mg. On the other hand, copper (II) adsorption with GT is maximized at pH 6, with an optimum
adsorbent mass of 100 mg as well. Zinc (II) was greatly adsorbed at pH 6, with optimum adsorbent masses of 150 mg and 200
mg for PM and GT, respectively. Furthermore, the adsorbents also reached their highest adsorption in the absence of salts
and crowding agents with maximum initial concentrations of copper (II) and zinc (II) of 100 ppm and 110 ppm, respectively.
Adsorbent characterization indicates the presence of alcohol and carboxyl groups as the most relevant active sites on the
adsorbents. Surface and porosity studies also evidence a good competitiveness with the conventional adsorbents.
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