Reference : Characterization of unconventional sand-based substrates for adsorption of micropollu...
Scientific journals : Article
Life sciences : Environmental sciences & ecology
http://hdl.handle.net/10993/51450
Characterization of unconventional sand-based substrates for adsorption of micropollutants in nature-based systems
English
Brunhoferova, Hana mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Science, Technology and Medicine (FSTM) > Department of Engineering (DoE) >]
Venditti, Silvia mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Science, Technology and Medicine (FSTM) > FSTM Faculty administration >]
Hansen, Joachim mailto [University of Luxembourg > Faculty of Science, Technology and Medicine (FSTM) > Department of Engineering (DoE) >]
18-Jun-2022
Journal of Environmental Management
Elsevier
Yes
International
0301-4797
1095-8630
Atlanta
GE
[en] unconventional substrates ; adsorption processes ; micropollutant removal ; isotherm models
[en] The focus of this study is the characterization of unconventional sand-based substrates used in our previous
project EmiSûre, (Interreg Greater Region (German federal states Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland, the Grand
Duchy of Luxembourg, regions Wallonia and Lorraine from Belgium and France, respectively), 2017–2021). The
project aimed to develop and test alternative, nature-based technologies for the elimination of micropollutants
(MPs) from municipal wastewater. For the characterization, two approaches were chosen. In the first approach,
adsorption kinetics with a single compound allowed a perception of the adsorption capacity of the studied
substrates compared to conventional substrates (granular activated carbons). This knowledge was completed by
the second approach: an implementation of the studied substrates in packed-bed columns, which treated a
mixture of 27 MPs in tap water for 10 months. Additionally, all three substrates (bentonite sand, sand with 15%
activated biochar and sand with 15% zeolite) were characterized for physical and chemical properties, and the
microbial potential of the activated and non-activated biochar was examined. From the studies, it is clear that the
sand with an admixture of activated biochar is the most efficient sorbent in terms of single compound adsorption
in batch (dye) and adsorption of 27 MPs on packed-bed columns. In contrast to the two other substrates, it shows
long-term stable removal efficiencies. In the packed-bed columns, 18 out of 27 compounds were removed on
average with high efficiency (80–99%), which is impressive, if we consider the variety of the compounds
examined (pharmaceuticals, herbicides, pesticides, etc.) and their removal in conventional treatments. Addi-
tionally, adsorption models were created for the experimental data of all compounds adsorbed on the substrate
with an admixture of activated biochar resulting in the best fit with the combined Langmuir-Freundlich model.
These satisfying results suggest the application of the sand-based substrate with an admixture of activated
biochar for further research and possibly upscale installations with the aim to offer and prove a reasonable and
efficient alternative for MPs elimination from municipal wastewater.
http://hdl.handle.net/10993/51450

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