Sodium citrate and biochar synergistic improvement of nanoscale zero-valent iron composite for the removal of chromium (Ⅵ) in aqueous solutions

Mengyan Ma , Hongyi Zhou , Mengyao Ye , Yongkang Zhao , Shams Ali Baig , Ning Huang


Received February 06, 2021,Revised , Accepted May 31, 2021, Available online August 04, 2021

Volume 34,2022,Pages 227-239

Sodium citrate (SC) is a widely-used food and industrial additive with the properties of complexation and microbial degradation. In the present study, nano-zero-valent iron reaction system ([email protected]) was successfully established by modifying nanoscale zero-valent iron (nZVI) with SC and biochar (BC), and was employed to remove Cr(Ⅵ) from aqueous solutions. The nZVI, SC-nZVI and [email protected] were characterized and compared using X-ray diffraction (XRD), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), thermogravimetric analyses (TGA), vibrating sample magnetometer (VSM), scanning electron microscope (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD) and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS). The results showed that nZVI was successfully loaded on the biochar, and both the agglomeration and surface passivation problems of nanoparticles were well resolved. The dosage of SC, C:Fe, initial pH and Cr(Ⅵ) concentration demonstrated direct effects on the removal efficiency. The maximum Cr(Ⅵ) removal rate and the removal capacity within 60 min were 99.7% and 199.46 mg/g, respectively (C:Fe was 1:1, SC dosage was 1.12 mol.%, temperature was 25°C, pH = 7, and the original concentration of Cr(Ⅵ) was 20 mg/L). The reaction confirmed to follow the pseudo-second-order reaction kinetics, and the order of the reaction rate constant k was as follows: [email protected] > [email protected] > SC-nZVI > nZVI. In addition, the mechanism of Cr(Ⅵ) removal by [email protected] mainly involved adsorption, reduction and co-precipitation, and the reduction of Cr(Ⅵ) to Cr(Ⅲ) by nano Fe0 played a vital role. Findings from the present study demonstrated that the [email protected] exhibited excellent removal efficiency toward Cr(Ⅵ) with an improved synergistic characteristic by SC and BC.

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