Monodisperse amino-modified nanosized zero-valent iron for selective and recyclable removal of TNT: Synthesis, characterization, and removal mechanism

Qinan Song , Jing Li , Qingxiang Zhou , Miao Li , Yongli Liu


Received August 08, 2020,Revised , Accepted October 14, 2020, Available online October 30, 2020

Volume 33,2021,Pages 69-79

Nitroaromatic explosives are major pollutants produced during wars that cause serious environmental and health problems. The removal of a typical nitroaromatic explosive, 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene (TNT), from aqueous solution, was conducted using a new recyclable magnetic nano-adsorbent ([email protected]2single bondNH2). This adsorbent was prepared by grafting amino groups onto [email protected]2 particles with a well-defined core-shell structure and demonstrated monodispersity in solution. The removal performance of the nano-adsorbent towards TNT was found to be 2.57 and 4.92 times higher than that towards two analogous explosives, 2,4-dinitrotoluene (2,4-DNT) and 2-nitrotoluene (2-NT), respectively, under neutral conditions. The difference in the removal performance among the three compounds was further compared in terms of the effects of different conditions (pH value, ionic strength, humic acid concentration, adsorbent modification degree and dosage, etc.) and the electrostatic potential distributions of the three compounds. The most significant elevation is owing to modification of amino on [email protected]2 which made a 20.7% increase in adsorption efficiency of TNT. The experimental data were well fit by the pseudo-second-order kinetic model and the Freundlich adsorption isotherm model, indicating multilayer adsorption on a heterogeneous surface. The experimental results and theoretical considerations show that the interactions between [email protected]2single bondNH2 NPs and TNT correspond to dipole-dipole and hydrophobic interactions. These interactions should be considered in the design of an adsorbent. Furthermore, the adaptability to aqueous environment and excellent regeneration capacity of [email protected]2single bondNH2 NPs makes these remediation materials promising for applications.

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