Kinetic and isothermal adsorption-desorption of PAEs on biochars: effect of biomass feedstock, pyrolysis temperature, and mechanism implication of desorption hysteresis
Biochar has the potential to sequester biomass carbon efficiently into land, simultaneously while improving soil fertility and crop production. Biochar has also attracted attention as a potential sorbent for good performance on adsorption and immobilization of many organic pollutants such as phthalic acid esters (PAEs), a typical plasticizer in plastic and presenting a current environmental issue. Due to lack of investigation on the kinetic and thermodynamic adsorption-desorption of PAEs on biochar, we systematically assessed adsorption-desorption for two typical PAEs, dimethyl phthalate (DMP) and diethyl phthalate (DEP), using biochar derived from peanut hull and wheat straw at different pyrolysis temperatures (450, 550, and 650 °C). The aromaticity and specific surface area of biochars increased with the pyrolysis temperature, whereas the total amount of surface functional groups decreased. The quasi-second-order kinetic model could better describe the adsorption of DMP/DEP, and the adsorption capacity of wheat straw biochars was higher than that of peanut hull biochars, owing to the O-bearing functional groups of organic matter on exposed minerals within the biochars. The thermodynamic analysis showed that DMP/DEP adsorption on biochar is physically spontaneous and endothermic. The isothermal desorption and thermodynamic index of irreversibility indicated that DMP/DEP is stably adsorbed. Sorption of PAEs on biochar and the mechanism of desorption hysteresis provide insights relevant not only to the mitigation of plasticizer mobility but also to inform on the effect of biochar amendment on geochemical behavior of organic pollutants in the water and soil.
KeywordsBiochar PAEs Adsorption Desorption Hysteresis
We thank for CUGB Famous Teacher Auditorium Program 2017 for Dr. Saran P. Sohi from University of Edinburgh. We also appreciate Dr. Saran P. Sohi to comment and polish our revised paper thoroughly. We are grateful to the editor and three anonymous reviewers whose comments improved the quality of the manuscript.
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