Sulfonated polyether sulfone reinforced multiwall carbon nanotubes composite for the removal of lead in wastewater

  • Jamshaid RashidEmail author
  • Rafia Azam
  • Rajeev Kumar
  • Mahtab Ahmad
  • Adeela Rehman
  • M. A. Barakat
Original Article


An effective sulfonated polyether sulfone/multiwall carbon nanotubes composite (SPES/MWCNTs) has been designed to adsorb lead (Pb2+) ions from synthetic wastewater. Structural characteristics of the SPES/MWCNTs were analyzed by scanning electron microscopy, BET surface area, and FTIR techniques. Batch adsorption experiments were performed to evaluate the role of various experimental conditions including solution pH, reaction time, and initial adsorbate concentrations. The kinetics for Pb2+ adsorption on SPES/MWCNTs followed a pseudo-second-order kinetic model which suggests chemisorption mechanism was involved in Pb2+ removal onto SPES/MWCNTs. Adsorption equilibrium data were best described through Langmuir isotherm and calculated maximum monolayer adsorption capacity was found to be 54.054 mg g− 1. Furthermore, the regeneration and reusability of spent SPES/MWCNTs were investigated with 0.1 M HNO3, and about 83.18% removal of Pb2+ was observed after third cycle. The obtained results suggested that SPES/MWCNTs’ composite could be very effective and favorable adsorbent in wastewater treatment.


Adsorption Multiwall carbon nanotubes Pb2+ Environmental nanotechnology Langmuir isotherm 



The authors gratefully acknowledge the Quaid-i-Azam University for funding this research through annual research fund.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors have no conflict of interests.


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Copyright information

© King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Environmental Science, Faculty of Biological SciencesQuaid-i-Azam UniversityIslamabadPakistan
  2. 2.Department of Environmental Sciences, Faculty of Meteorology, Environment and Arid Land AgricultureKing Abdulaziz UniversityJeddahKingdom of Saudi Arabia
  3. 3.Department of ChemistryInha UniversityIncheonSouth Korea
  4. 4.Central Metallurgical R&D InstituteCairoEgypt

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