Determining the Efficiency of Carbonaceous Adsorbents in Removing Chromium (VI) from Aqueous Solution

Document Type : Research Paper


1 PhD. Candidate of Soil Fertility and Biotechnology Management, Sari University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Sari, Iran

2 Assoc. Prof., Dept. of Soil Science and Engineering, Sari University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Sari, Iran

3 Assist. Prof., Dept. of Soil Science and Engineering, Sari University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Sari, Iran

4 Prof., Dept. of Soil Science and Engineering, Sari University of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Sari, Iran

5 Assist. Prof., Dept. of Land Management, Faculty of Agriculture, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Selangor, Malaysia


The increase of various industries and the growth of the earth's population have caused various types of contamination in the environment. Anionic contaminants are one of the most important contaminants in water, which have many risks to human health and living organisms and also have many important environmental risks. Therefore, it is important to modify these resources. Studies showed that the use of biochar and metal-coated biochar effectively leads to the removal of a significant amount of contaminants from water and soil, but so far, the effect of carbon-metal composite on the removal of contaminants, especially anionic contaminants, has not been comprehensively investigated. In this research, the effect of biochar, metal-coated biochar and biochar-metal composite on the removal of chromium from water was investigated. Metal-coated biochars and various biochar-metal composites were prepared from the combination of metals (copper, iron and aluminum) with agricultural residues (rice straw) in raw form or as a biochar. The samples included Biochar, Copper-coated biochar, Aluminum-coated biochar, Iron-coated biochar, Copper composite, Aluminum composite, and Iron composite. In the first stage, the optimal conditions for contaminant removal were investigated, then an optimal amount of adsorbents and contaminant with a concentration of 20 mg/L and pH=6 were combined and shaken for three hours. until they reached equilibrium. After centrifugation and filtration, the final concentration of the contaminant was read and the chromium removal percentage was calculated. The results of the present research showed that the application of iron composite and iron-coated biochar could remove 90.32 and 93.71 percent of chromium pollutant from the aqueous solution, respectively. Therefore, the use of these adsorbents can remediate chromium-contaminated water.


Main Subjects

Ahmad, M., Rajapaksha, A. U., Lim, J. E., Zhang, M., Bolan, N., Mohan, D., et al. 2014. Biochar as a sorbent for contaminant management in soil and water: a review. Chemosphere, 99, 19-33.
Chen, T., Zhou, Z., Xu, S., Wang, H. & Lu, W. 2015. Adsorption behavior comparison of trivalent and hexavalent chromium on biochar derived from municipal sludge. Bioresource Technology, 190, 388-394.
Choppala, G., Bolan, N., Megharaj, M., Chen, Z. & Naidu, R. 2012. The influence of biochar and black carbon on reduction and bioavailability of chromate in soils. Journal of Environmental Quality, 41, 1175-1184.
Fendorf, S., Wielinga, B. W. & Hansel, C. M. 2000. Chromium transformations in natural environments: the role of biological and abiological processes in chromium (VI) reduction. International Geology Review, 42, 691-701.
Fuchs, M. R., Garcia-Perez, M., Small, P. & Flora, G. 2014. Campfire lessons: breaking down the combustion process to understand biochar production and characterization. The Biochar Journal.
Gong, X., Huang, D., Liu, Y., Zeng, G., Wang, R., Wan, J., et al. 2017. Stabilized nanoscale zerovalent iron mediated cadmium accumulation and oxidative damage of Boehmeria nivea (L.) Gaudich cultivated in cadmium contaminated sediments. Environmental Science and Technology, 51, 11308-11316.
Gong, X., Huang, D., Liu, Y., Zeng, G., Wang, R., Wei, J., et al. 2018. Pyrolysis and reutilization of plant residues after phytoremediation of heavy metals contaminated sediments: for heavy metals stabilization and dye adsorption. Bioresource Technology, 253, 64-71.
Huang, D., Liu, C., Zhang, C., Deng, R., Wang, R., Xue, W., et al. 2019. Cr (VI) removal from aqueous solution using biochar modified with Mg/Al-layered double hydroxide intercalated with ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid. Bioresource Technology, 276, 127-132.
IBI, 2012. Standardized Product Definition and Product Testing Guidelines for Biochar that is Used in Soil. International Biochar Initiative pub., Victor, NY, USA.
Ikegami, K., Hirose, Y., Sakashita, H., Maruyama, R. & Sugiyama, T. 2020. Role of polyphenol in sugarcane molasses as a nutrient for hexavalent chromium bioremediation using bacteria. Chemosphere, 250, 126267.
Jacob, L., Joseph, S. & Varghese, L. A. 2020. Polysulfone/MMT mixed matrix membranes for hexavalent chromium removal from wastewater. Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering, 45, 7611-7620.
Kambo, H. S. & Dutta, A. 2015. A comparative review of biochar and hydrochar in terms of production, physico-chemical properties and applications. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 45, 359-378.
Kumar, A., Singh, E., Khapre, A., Bordoloi, N. & Kumar, S. 2020a. Sorption of volatile organic compounds on non-activated biochar. Bioresource Technology, 297, 122469.
Kumar, N., Kardam, A., Jain, V. & Nagpal, S. 2020b. A rapid, reusable polyaniline-impregnated nanocellulose composite-based system for enhanced removal of chromium and cleaning of waste water. Separation Science and Technology, 55, 1436-1448.
Li, R., Wang, J. J., Gaston, L. A., Zhou, B., Li, M., Xiao, R., et al. 2018. An overview of carbothermal synthesis of metal–biochar composites for the removal of oxyanion contaminants from aqueous solution. Carbon, 129, 674-687.
Liang, S., Shi, S., Zhang, H., Qiu, J., Yu, W., Li, M., et al. 2019. One-pot solvothermal synthesis of magnetic biochar from waste biomass: formation mechanism and efficient adsorption of Cr (VI) in an aqueous solution. Science of the Total Environment, 695, 133886.
Mohamed, A. K. & Mahmoud, M. E. 2020. Nanoscale Pisum sativum pods biochar encapsulated starch hydrogel: a novel nanosorbent for efficient chromium (VI) ions and naproxen drug removal. Bioresource Technology, 308, 123263.
Mohan, D., Rajput, S., Singh, V. K., Steele, P. H. & Pittman Jr, C. U. 2011. Modeling and evaluation of chromium remediation from water using low cost bio-char, a green adsorbent. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 188, 319-333.
Nabizadeh, S. 2016. Leaching of methylene blue and direct blue 71 in a soil amended with biochar. MSc. Thesis, Sari Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources University, Sari, Iran. (In Persian)
Pan, J., Jiang, J. & Xu, R. 2013. Adsorption of Cr (III) from acidic solutions by crop straw derived biochars. Journal of Environmental Sciences, 25, 1957-1965.
Patra, C., Shahnaz, T., Subbiah, S. & Narayanasamy, S. 2020. Comparative assessment of raw and acid-activated preparations of novel Pongamia pinnata shells for adsorption of hexavalent chromium from simulated wastewater. Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 27, 14836-14851.
Revathi, M., Sivagaami Sundari, G., Ahmed Basha, C., Alam, M., Sagadevan, S. & Ahmad, N. 2020. Reclamation of hexavalent chromium from electroplating effluents by electroextraction. Journal of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, 20, 6547-6554.
Reyes-Serrano, A., López-Alejo, J. E., Hernández-Cortázar, M. A. & Elizalde, I. 2020. Removing contaminants from tannery wastewater by chemical precipitation using CaO and Ca (OH) 2. Chinese Journal of Chemical Engineering, 28, 1107-1111.
Sakthivel, A., Thangagiri, B., Jeyasubramanian, K., Raja, J. D., Prabhahar, R. S. S., Nayagi, S. P. B., et al. 2021. Switching the hydrophobic Neyveli lignite into hydrophilic type by surface modification and its subsequent use for removing Cr (VI)/F− from artificial pollutant. Fuel, 298, 120787.
Samsuri, A., Sadegh-Zadeh, F. & Seh-Bardan, B. 2014. Characterization of biochars produced from oil palm and rice husks and their adsorption capacities for heavy metals. International Journal of Environmental Science and Technology, 11, 967-976.
Shakya, A. & Agarwal, T. 2019. Removal of Cr (VI) from water using pineapple peel derived biochars: adsorption potential and re-usability assessment. Journal of Molecular Liquids, 293, 111497.
Shi, S., Yang, J., Liang, S., Li, M., Gan, Q., Xiao, K., et al. 2018. Enhanced Cr (VI) removal from acidic solutions using biochar modified by Fe3O4@SiO2-NH2 particles. Science of the Total Environment, 628, 499-508.
Tan, X., Liu, Y., Zeng, G., Wang, X., Hu, X., Gu, Y., et al. 2015. Application of biochar for the removal of pollutants from aqueous solutions. Chemosphere, 125, 70-85.
Tan, Z., Yuan, S., Hong, M., Zhang, L. & Huang, Q. 2020. Mechanism of negative surface charge formation on biochar and its effect on the fixation of soil Cd. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 384, 121370.
Tareq, R., Akter, N. & Azam, M. S. 2019. Biochars and biochar composites: Low-cost adsorbents for environmental remediation. Biochar from Biomass and Waste. 2019. 169-209. 3.00010-8.
Thangagiri, B., Sakthivel, A., Jeyasubramanian, K., Seenivasan, S., Raja, J. D. & Yun, K. 2022. Removal of hexavalent chromium by biochar derived from Azadirachta indica leaves: batch and column studies. Chemosphere, 286, 131598.
USDA & NRCS, 2007. Statistix 8 and user guid for the plant material program T version 2. 1-80.
Wang, H., Song, X., Zhang, H., Tan, P. & Kong, F. 2020a. Removal of hexavalent chromium in dual-chamber microbial fuel cells separated by different ion exchange membranes. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 384, 121459.
Wang, H., Wang, S. & Gao, Y. 2020b. Cetyl trimethyl ammonium bromide modified magnetic biochar from pine nut shells for efficient removal of acid chrome blue K. Bioresource Technology, 312, 123564.
Wang, J., Sun, T., Saleem, A. & Chen, Y. 2020c. Enhanced adsorptive removal of Cr (VI) in aqueous solution by polyethyleneimine modified palygorskite. Chinese Journal of Chemical Engineering, 28, 2650-2657.
Wang, L., Chen, M., Li, J., Jin, Y., Zhang, Y. & Wang, Y. 2020d. A novel substitution-based method for effective leaching of chromium (III) from chromium-tanned leather waste: The thermodynamics, kinetics and mechanism studies. Waste Management, 103, 276-284.
Wang, X. S., Chen, L. F., Li, F. Y., Chen, K. L., Wan, W. Y. & Tang, Y. J. 2010. Removal of Cr (VI) with wheat-residue derived black carbon: reaction mechanism and adsorption performance. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 175, 816-822.
Wang, Z., Shen, Q., Xue, J., Guan, R., Li, Q., Liu, X., et al. 2020e. 3D hierarchically porous NiO/NF electrode for the removal of chromium (VI) from wastewater by electrocoagulation. Chemical Engineering Journal, 402, 126151.
Xiang, W., Zhang, X., Chen, J., Zou, W., He, F., Hu, X., et al. 2020. Biochar technology in wastewater treatment: a critical review. Chemosphere, 252, 126539.
Xu, R. K., Xiao, S. C., Yuan, J. H. & Zhao, A. Z. 2011. Adsorption of methyl violet from aqueous solutions by the biochars derived from crop residues. Bioresource Technology, 102, 10293-10298.
Xue, W., Huang, D., Zeng, G., Wan, J., Zhang, C., Xu, R., et al. 2018. Nanoscale zero-valent iron coated with rhamnolipid as an effective stabilizer for immobilization of Cd and Pb in river sediments. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 341, 381-389.
Yao, F., Jia, M., Yang, Q., Luo, K., Chen, F., Zhong, Y., et al. 2020. Electrochemical Cr (VI) removal from aqueous media using titanium as anode: simultaneous indirect electrochemical reduction of Cr (VI) and in-situ precipitation of Cr (III). Chemosphere, 260, 127537.
Yao, Y., Gao, B., Inyang, M., Zimmerman, A. R., Cao, X., Pullammanappallil, P., et al. 2011. Removal of phosphate from aqueous solution by biochar derived from anaerobically digested sugar beet tailings. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 190, 501-507.
Yi, Y., Tu, G., Zhao, D., Tsang, P. E. & Fang, Z. 2020. Key role of FeO in the reduction of Cr (VI) by magnetic biochar synthesised using steel pickling waste liquor and sugarcane bagasse. Journal of Cleaner Production, 245, 118886.
Ying, Z., Ren, X., Li, J., Wu, G. & Wei, Q. 2020. Recovery of chromium (VI) in wastewater using solvent extraction with amide. Hydrometallurgy, 196, 105440.
Zameni, L. 2016. Leaching in a soil amended with biochar and Fe-coated biochar Nitrate. MSc. Thesis, Sari Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources University, Sari, Iran. (In Persian).
Zhang, M., Gao, B., Yao, Y., Xue, Y. & Inyang, M. 2012. Synthesis, characterization, and environmental implications of graphene-coated biochar. Science of the Total Environment, 435, 567-572.
Zheng, Y., Zimmerman, A. R. & Gao, B. 2020. Comparative investigation of characteristics and phosphate removal by engineered biochars with different loadings of magnesium, aluminum, or iron. Science of the Total Environment, 747, 141277.
Zou, H., Zhao, J., He, F., Zhong, Z., Huang, J., Zheng, Y., et al. 2021. Ball milling biochar iron oxide composites for the removal of chromium (Cr (VI)) from water: performance and mechanisms. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 413, 125252.