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Removal of Low Concentrations of Ammonium and Humic Acid from Simulated Groundwater by Vermiculite/Palygorskite Mixture

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Contaminants in water are classified into different types based on their physical and chemical properties. Thus, more than one type of sorbents may be needed for their removal. In this article, a combination of vermiculite with palygorskite was studied for their simultaneous removal of ammonium and humic acid from simulated groundwater. Batch results showed that the Langmuir model described ammonium adsorption well with an adsorption capacity of 22 mg/g while the humic acid adsorption data fitted to the linear adsorption better, suggesting different removal mechanisms of these two types of contaminants. Kinetic studies showed an instantaneous removal of ammonium and humic acid. A column packed with mixture of equal volumes of vermiculite and palygorskite could treat 100 pore volumes for ammonium removal at an initial concentration of 10 mg/L and 500 pore volumes for humic acid removal at an initial concentration of 20 mg/L before the effluent concentrations exceeded the standard.
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Keywords: adsorption; ammonium; humic acid; palygorskite; removal; vermiculite

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2012-08-01

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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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