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Evaluation of Olive Stones for Cd(II), Cu(II), Pb(II) and Cr(VI) Biosorption from Aqueous Solution: Equilibrium and Kinetics

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Milled olive stones are evaluated as a biosorbent for the removal of heavy metals such as Cd (II), Cu (II), Pb(II) and Cr(VI) from aqueous effluents. To this end, thermodynamic and kinetic studies for single and multimetal systems are performed through batch equilibrium isotherms. The biosorbent was characterized by elemental and FTIR analysis and scanning electron microscopy. The effect of the different parameters, such as contact time, pH, amount of adsorbent and initial metal concentration, on the sorption process is also investigated. The maximum removal percentage for 1 mg L−1 of cadmium, copper, and lead was 77.4%, 80.5%, and 94.5%, respectively, at pH 6 with 5 g L−1 of sorbent. In the case of Cr(VI), a removal percentage of 46% was obtained in 2 h at pH 2 using a larger amount of sorbent (10 g L−1) and an initial concentration of 2 mg L−1. Equilibrium data were analyzed by applying different adsorption isotherm models, resulting in—a good agreement with—the Langmuir model with maximum capacities of 0.557, 0.3 and 0.581 mg g−1 for Cu(II), Cd(II) and Pb(II), respectively, whereas for Cr(VI), the Temkin model provided the best fit with a maximum capacity of 2.34 mg g−1. The kinetic data fitted well into the pseudo-second-order model which allowed the adsorption rate constants to be calculated. Cd(II) resulted to have the highest kinetic constant, followed by Cu(II), Cr(VI) and Pb(II). The results showed that milled olive stones can be used as a biosorbent for the removal of these metals from aqueous solutions.

Article Highlights

  • Trace concentrations of Cu(II), Cd(II), Pb(II), and Cr(VI) were adsorbed by olive stones.

  • Removals of 77.4%, 80.5 and 94.5% were obtained for Cu(II), Cd(II), or Pb(II) at pH 6.

  • For Cr(VI), a removal percentage of 46% was obtained at pH 2 with 10 g L−1 of sorbent.

  • Langmuir isotherm model was fitted to Cu(II), Cd(II), and Pb(II) adsorption isotherm data.

  • Cd(II) has the highest pseudo-second-order kinetic constant, followed by Cu(II), Cr(VI) and Pb(II).

  • Milled olive stone is an effective and cheaper biosorbent to remove toxic metals.

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M. Ben Amar acknowledges the financial support of the Faculty of Science (University of Sfax, Tunisia) and of The Environmental and Analytical Chemistry Research Group of the Department of Chemistry (University of Girona, Spain).

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Correspondence to Victoria Salvadó.

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Amar, M.B., Walha, K. & Salvadó, V. Evaluation of Olive Stones for Cd(II), Cu(II), Pb(II) and Cr(VI) Biosorption from Aqueous Solution: Equilibrium and Kinetics. Int J Environ Res (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s41742-020-00246-5

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  • Biosorption
  • Heavy metal
  • Olive stones
  • Kinetics
  • Sorption isotherms