UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Hybrid Beads of Zero Valent Iron Oxide Nanoparticles and Chitosan for Removal of Arsenic in Contaminated Water Ahmed, Mian Fawaz; Abbas, Muhammad Asad; Mahmood, Azhar; Ahmad, Nasir M.; Rasheed, Hifza; Qadir, Muhammad Abdul; Khan, Asad Ullah; Qiblawey, Hazim; Zhu, Shenmin; Sadiq, Rehan; Khan, Niaz Ali


Water contaminated with highly hazardous metals including arsenic (As) is one of the major challenges faced by mankind in the present day. To address this pressing issue, hybrid beads were synthesized with various concentrations of zero valent iron oxide nanoparticles, i.e., 20% (FeCh-20), 40% (FeCh-40) and 60% (FeCh-60) impregnated into a polymer of chitosan. These hybrid beads were employed as an adsorbent under the optimized conditions of pH and time to facilitate the efficient removal of hazardous arsenic by adsorption cum reduction processes. X-ray Diffraction (XRD), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR), Brunauer- Emmett-Teller BET, a porosity test and wettability analysis were performed to characterize these hybrid beads. The porosity and contact angle of the prepared hybrid beads decreased with an increase in nanoparticle concentration. The effects of various adsorption factors such as adsorbent composition, contact period, pH value and the initial adsorbate concentration were also evaluated to study the performance of these beads for arsenic treatment in contaminated water. FeCh-20, FeCh-40 and FeCh-60 have demonstrated 63%, 81% and 70% removal of arsenic at optimized conditions of pH 7.4 in 10 h, respectively. Higher adsorption of arsenic by FeCh-40 is attributed to its optimal porosity, hydrophilicity and the presence of appropriate nanoparticle contents. The Langmuir adsorption kinetics described the pseudo second order. Thus, the novel beads of FeCh-40 developed in this work are a potent candidate for the treatment of polluted water contaminated with highly toxic arsenic metals.

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