Adsorption of phenol from aqueous solution by four types of modified attapulgites

  • X. Guo
  • C. HeEmail author
  • X. Sun
  • X. Liang
  • X. Chen
  • X. Y. Liu
Original Paper


To study the adsorption of phenol by various modifications of attapulgite, four modifiers (hydrochloric acid, octadecyl trimethyl ammonium chloride, nitrilotriacetic acid and ethanediamine) were chosen and the phenol removal properties of the aqueous solution were explored. All modified attapulgite samples were characterized by SEM and FTIR, which revealed that the modified attapulgites had different surface structures and that the modifier groups successfully grafted onto the surface of the attapulgite. Effects of dosage, pH, the concentration of sodium ions and temperature on the adsorption capacity were evaluated. In this experiment, phenol removal was maximized at an adsorbent’s dosing concentration of 200 g L−1. The sorption kinetic data could be well represented by a pseudo-second-order model. The Langmuir equation agrees very well with the equilibrium isotherm. The findings herein suggest that octadecyl trimethyl ammonium chloride modified attapulgite may be a cost-effective and highly efficient material for phenol removal, with removal rates of more than 90% in aqueous solutions with low concentrations of sodium ions, at room temperature and a pH of 3. In conclusion, octadecyl trimethyl ammonium chloride modified attapulgite was superior to other forms of attapulgite as a phenol absorbent.


Attapulgite Hydrochloric acid Octadecyl trimethyl ammonium chloride Nitrilotriacetic acid Ethanediamine Phenol 



This research was supported by National Key R&D program (2016YFA0601003), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41101230, 40771203 and 40871243), the Shanghai Science and Technology Committee (10231201600) and the Shanghai Key Laboratory of Bio-Energy Crops (10DZ2271800). We are also grateful for the support of the Grant-in-Aid of Scientific Research from the Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science (No. 23405049).


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Copyright information

© Islamic Azad University (IAU) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • X. Guo
    • 1
  • C. He
    • 1
    Email author
  • X. Sun
    • 1
  • X. Liang
    • 1
  • X. Chen
    • 1
  • X. Y. Liu
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Environmental and Chemical EngineeringShanghai UniversityShanghaiChina

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