Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 1, pp 721–737 | Cite as

Harmful weed to prospective adsorbent: low-temperature–carbonized Ipomoea carnea stem carbon coated with aluminum oxyhydroxide nanoparticles for defluoridation

  • Jitu Saikia
  • Susmita Sarmah
  • Pinky Saikia
  • Rajib Lochan GoswameeEmail author
Research Article


Gainful utilization of stems of the pernicious weed, Ipomoea carnea, to prepare good quality carbon and its modification with aluminum oxyhydroxide (AlOOH) nanoparticles for efficient defluoridation from contaminated drinking water is discussed in this paper. Surface functional groups are enhanced by functionalization of the carbons under acid treatment which acted as anchor to the AlOOH nanoparticles. Formation of AlOOH particles over the carbon surface is confirmed from X-ray diffractometry analysis. The AlOOH–carbon nanocomposite showed higher fluoride removal capacity than the neat AlOOH nanoparticles with a maximum removal capacity in the range of 46.55–53.71 mg g−1. Reaction kinetics and isotherm studies showed that fluoride adsorption is quite feasible on the adsorbent surface. The column study showed the possibility of the adsorbent for large-scale applications. The adsorbent can be regenerated by a mild treatment with 0.1 N NaOH solutions. The adsorbent is highly capable for defluoridation from synthetic as well as fluoride-contaminated natural water and, thus, can be used as an alternative for commercial defluoridation adsorbents. The use of Ipomoea carnea for defluoridation can be a way of producing low-cost adsorbent material, and the use for such purposes may also be helpful to control the weed up to a good extent.


Ipomoea carnea Fluoride toxicity AlOOH–carbon nanocomposite Surface functionalization Low-cost adsorbent Defluoridation Groundwater Column study 



The authors are thankful to the Director, CSIR-NEIST, Jorhat, India, for his kind permission to publish the work and to the project head CSC-0408 for the FESEM facility and AcSIR, New Delhi for providing the opportunity to register under the Ph.D. program.

Funding information

The authors thank the Department of Science and Technology (DST), New Delhi for the financial support.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interest.


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Copyright information

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

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Advanced Materials Group, Materials Science & Technology DivisionCSIR-North East Institute of Science & TechnologyJorhatIndia
  2. 2.Academy of Scientific and Innovative ResearchJorhatIndia

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