Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 31, pp 31219–31229 | Cite as

Adsorption behavior of chloroform, carbon disulfide, and acetone on coconut shell-derived carbon: experimental investigation, simulation, and model study

  • Xiaoyan Zhao
  • Xiang LiEmail author
  • Tianle Zhu
  • Xiaolong Tang
Research Article


The adsorption performances of chloroform (TCM), carbon disulfide (CDS), and acetone (CP) were investigated and compared over self-prepared coconut shell-derived carbon (CDC) to study the adsorption behavior and mechanism of heteroatom (Cl, S, O)-containing volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The result indicates that the adsorption capacity of three typical VOCs obeys the sequence: TCM (361 mg/g) > CDS (194 mg/g) > CP (37 mg/g). However, desorption experiments show that adsorption intensity follows the order: CDS (165 °C) > TCM (147 °C) > CP (130 °C). The influence of surface oxygen-containing functional groups over CDC on adsorption performance was also studied by temperature programmed desorption (TPD) and in situ DRIFT spectra. It is implied that carbonyl in lactone and benzoquinonyl of CDC could affect VOC adsorption intensity by conjugation effect. Furthermore, adsorption isotherms of three VOCs were obtained through Grand Canonical Monte Carlo (GCMC) simulation and then fitted by classical isothermal models. Furthermore, the total adsorption potentials are calculated by potential theory, and the result follows the order: TCM (− 2.18 kJ/mol) > CDS (− 2.1 kJ/mol) > CP (− 1.5 kJ/mol). It is believed that the effect of magnetic susceptibility (χ) is more crucial than polarizability () and the distance r between the interacting molecules for the potential difference.


VOCs Coconut shell activated carbon Carbonyl group GCMC simulation Isotherm models Adsorption potential calculation 



This work was financially supported by the Beijing Natural Science Foundation (8182033), the National Key Research and Development Program (2017TFC0211800), and the American Energy Foundation (6326012).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Space and EnvironmentBeihang UniversityBeijingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.School of Energy and Environmental EngineeringUniversity of Science and Technology BeijingBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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