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Chelating extraction of copper from soil using s-carboxymethylcysteine

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Heavy metal contamination of soil frequently occurs at hazardous waste sites. The use of chelating agents to extract heavy metals from contaminated soils is seen as a treatment method. This research investigated the use of the chelator S-carboxymethylcysteine (SCMC) to extract copper from a spiked soil. Batch equilibration experiments over 24-hour periods tested the hypotheses that through a proper choice of chelator extraction could be made more selective toward heavy metals, and extracted metals could be readily recovered as precipitates by increasing the solution pH. The results showed that SCMC could extract and release copper reversibly and that SCMC prefers complexing with copper over competing Fe and Ca ions. Chemical equilibrium modeling was useful for selecting suitable chelating agents for the extraction and subsequent treatment conditions for metals recovery.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 1995-09-01

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  • Water Environment Research® (WER®) publishes peer-reviewed research papers, research notes, state-of-the-art and critical reviews on original, fundamental and applied research in all scientific and technical areas related to water quality, pollution control, and management. An annual Literature Review provides a review of published books and articles on water quality topics from the previous year.

    Published as: Sewage Works Journal, 1928 - 1949; Sewage and Industrial Wastes, 1950 - 1959; Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, 1959 - Oct 1989; Research Journal Water Pollution Control Federation, Nov 1989 - 1991; Water Environment Research, 1992 - present.
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