Due to increasing consumption of analgesic drugs associated with their occurrence in wastewater, it is necessary to pay attention to find new accessible types of sorbents for effective drug removal. The objective of this work is the assessment of ability of commercial montmorillonites for the removal of drugs from aqueous solutions since these inexpensive materials exhibit both adsorption and ion exchange properties as well as environmental stability. The commercial montmorillonite KSF, primarily used as acidic catalyst, was used in both unmodified and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) modified form as potential sorbent for three analgesics: paracetamol (PAR), ibuprofen (IBU) and diclofenac (DC) from aqueous solutions. The samples were characterized by X-ray fluorescence (XRFS), X-ray powder diffraction (XRD), simultaneous thermogravimetry and differential thermal analysis (TG/DTA) and high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). XRD confirmed the intercalation of CTAB into the montmorillonite structure with the increasing of basal spacing. Thermal analysis also determined the presence of CTAB associated with increasing of the hydrophobicity accompanied by a decrease in dehydration temperature. Also, due to surfactant modification, the temperature of constitution water removal decreased. Adsorption experiments were carried out in a batch mode with different initial concentration of paracetamol, ibuprofen and diclofenac solutions. Montmorillonite samples especially in organically modified form demonstrated sufficient sorption ability of pharmaceuticals from aqueous solutions in the order diclofenac > ibuprofen > paracetamol.
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Vallova, S., Plevova, E., Smutna, K. et al. Removal of analgesics from aqueous solutions onto montmorillonite KSF. J Therm Anal Calorim (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10973-021-10591-y