Removal of arsenic(V) from aqueous solutions was evaluated with the following three different sorption materials: coal-based activated carbon 12 × 40 (activated carbon), iron(II) oxide (FeO)/activated carbon-H, and iron oxide. The apparent characteristics and physical chemistry
performances of these adsorbents were investigated by X-ray diffraction, nitrogen adsorption, and scanning electronic microscope. Also, batch experiments for arsenic removal were performed, and the effects of pH value on arsenic(V) removal were studied. The results suggest that the main phases
of the iron oxide surface are magnetite, maghemite, hematite, and goethite; fine and uniform iron oxide particles can cover activated carbon surfaces and affect the surface area or pore structures of activated carbon; adsorption kinetics obey a pseudo-first-order rate equation; and adsorption
capacities of adsorbents are affected by the values of pH. The optimum value of pH for iron oxide lies in a narrow range between 4.0 and 5.5, and arsenic(V) removal by FeO/activated carbon-H is ideal and stable in the pH range 3 to 7, while activated carbon has the lowest adsorption capacity
in the entire pH range. Also, the adsorption characteristics of FeO/activated carbon-H composites and virgin activated carbon match well the Langmuir adsorption model, while those of iron oxide fit well the Freundlich adsorption model.
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