Lead Adsorption by Biomass and Weathered Coal Fly Ashes

  • Xenia WirthEmail author
  • N. N. Nortey Yeboah
  • Susan Burns
Conference paper
Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ESE)


Adsorption is an extensively-studied, cost-effective method of removing heavy metal ions from wastewater, such as lead, which is known to be toxic. Removal of metals with adsorbents that beneficially use waste materials are particularly advantageous to study due to their low cost. This research determined the adsorption capacity of three fly ashes (two biomass and one weathered coal ash) for Pb(II) from aqueous solutions. The adsorptive capacity of the alternative ashes were compared to one sample of activated carbon. The biomass fly ashes demonstrated good removal capacity for Pb(II) through a combination of adsorption and precipitation mechanisms. The weathered coal fly ash had low adsorption capacity (less than 3 mg/g). Biomass fly ashes have potential as low-cost alternatives for heavy metal removal.


Heavy metals Wastewater treatment Precipitation Beneficial use 



This research was funded by Southern Company. The authors graciously acknowledge the continued support of Southern Company, and the opinions expressed in this paper are the authors’ alone and do not necessarily reflect the policies and views of Southern Company. This work was performed in part at the Georgia Tech Institute for Electronics and Nanotechnology, a member of the National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure, which is supported by the National Science Foundation (Grant ECCS-1542174).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xenia Wirth
    • 1
    Email author
  • N. N. Nortey Yeboah
    • 2
  • Susan Burns
    • 1
  1. 1.AtlantaUSA
  2. 2.AtlantaUSA

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