Adsorption of cesium on different types of activated carbon


The optimal conditions to remove radiocesium from water by adsorption on activated carbon (AC) were investigated. Two commercial ACs were compared to ACs prepared by steam activation of brewers’ spent grain. The influence of pH and loading AC with Prussian blue were studied. 134Cs, measured by gamma-ray spectroscopy, served as a tracer for the Cs concentration. Column experiments showed that a neutral to acidic pH enhanced adsorption compared to high pH. Norit GAC 1240 had the highest adsorption capacity, 8.5 µg Cs g−1 AC for a column filtration. Sequential columns of Norit GAC 1240 removed 28.1 ± 2.8 % of Cs per column.

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This work was supported by the European Commission within HORIZON2020 via the EURATOM Project EUFRAT. The authors would also like to thank Prof. Vera Meynen from the Department of Chemistry, Laboratory for Adsorption and Catalysis, University Antwerp, Belgium.

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Correspondence to S. R. H. Vanderheyden.

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Vanderheyden, S.R.H., Van Ammel, R., Sobiech-Matura, K. et al. Adsorption of cesium on different types of activated carbon. J Radioanal Nucl Chem 310, 301–310 (2016).

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  • Activated carbon
  • Adsorption
  • Radiocesium
  • Radioactive waste water
  • Environmental remediation
  • Low-level (radioactive) waste