Evaluation of the Natural Adsorbent Luffa cylindrical for the Removal of Cadmium (II) from Aqueous Environments

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Assist. Prof. of Water Engineering, Faculty of Agriculture, Birjand University, Birjand

2 MSc Student of Water Resources Engineering, Birjand University. Birjand

3 PhD Student of Chemical Engineering, Amir-Kabir University of Technology, Tehran


Contamination of water resources with heavy metals has nowadays become a global problem that requires continuous monitoring and control. An annual quantity of about 25,000 tons of cadmium is normally discharged into the environment. The objective of this study was to investigate cadmium removal from aqueous environments with the natural Luffa sorbent using equilibrium experiments consisting of the batch flow mode and the continuous flow mode reactors with a fixed bed column. The effects of pH, contact time, adsorbent dosage, and initial solution concentration on the uptake of metal ions by the adsorbent in the batch operation were examined. Langmuir and Freundlich isotherm models were used to investigate the adsorption equilibrium. The adsorption behavior of Cd(II) ions fitted both isotherms but followed the Langmuir isotherm most precisely (R2=0.987), with a maximum adsorption capacity of 6.711 mg/g. Cadmium removal in the continuous flow mode using a fixed bed column was also studied. The effecte of operating parameters such as flow rate and inlet Cd(II) concentration on the sorption characteristics of Luffa were determined by assessing the breakthrough curve. The data confirmed that the total amount of sorbet Cd(II) and equilibrium Cd(II) uptakes decreased with increasing flow rate but increased with increasing inlet Cd(II) concentration. The Adams–Bohart model was applied to the experimental data to predict the breakthrough curves and to determine the characteristic parameters of the column useful for process design. Results showed that the natural Luffa absorbent was capable of efficiently removing cadmium from water.


Main Subjects

  1. Iqbal, M., and Edyvean, R.G.J. (2005). “Loofa sponge immobilized fungal biosorbent: A robust system for cadmium and other dissolved metal removal from aqueous solution.” J. of Chemosphere, 61(4), 510-518.
  2. Wang, F.Y., Wang, H., and Ma, J.W. (2010). “Adsorption of Cadmium(II) ions from aqueous solution by a new low-cost adsorbent- Bamboo Charcoal.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 177, 300-306.
  3. Kumar, U., and Bandyopadhyay, M. (2005). “Fixed bed column study for Cd (II) removal from wastewater using treated rice husk.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 129(1/3), 253-259.
  4. Ozturk, N., and Kavak, D. (2005). “Adsorption of boron from aqueous solutions using fly ash: Batch and column studies.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 127, 81-88.
  5. Demir, H., Top, A., Balkose, D., and Ulku, S. (2008). “Dye adsorption behavior of Luffa Cylindrica fibers.”
     J. of Hazard Mater, 153, 389-394.
  6. Oboh, I.O., and Aluyor, E.O. (2009). “Luffa Cylindrica-an emerging cash crop.” African J. of Agricultural Research, 4, 684-688.
  7. Umpuch, C., Bunmanan, N., Kueasing, U., and Kaewsan, P. (2011). “Adsorption of Lead from synthetic solution using Luffa Charcoal.” J. of World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology, 5, 9-24.
  8. Fiol, N., Villaescusa, I., Martinez, M., Miralles, N., Poch, J., and Serarols, J. (2006). “Sorption of Pb(II), Ni(II), Cu(II) and Cd(II) from aqueous solution by olive stone waste.” J. of Sep. Purif. Technol., 50, 132-140.
  9. Doyurum, S., and Celik, A. (2006). “Pb(II) and Cd(II) removal from aqueous solutions by olive cake.” J. of Hazard. Mater., B., 138, 22-28.

10. Huang, X., Gao, N., and Zhang, Q. (2007). “Thermodynamics and kinetics of cadmium adsorption on to oxidized granular activated carbon.” J. of Env. Sci., 19, 1287-1292.

11. Ofomaja, A.E., and Ho, Y.S. (2007). “Effect of pH on cadmium biosorption by coconut copra meal.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 139(2), 356-362.

12. Bulut, Y., and Tez, Z. (2007). “Adsorption studies on ground shells of hazelnut and almond.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 149, 35-41.

13. Kumar, U., and Bandyopadhyay, M. (2006). “Sorption of cadmium from aqueous solution using pretreated rice husk.” J. of Bioresour. Technol., 97, 104-109.

14. Sharma, N., Kaur, K., and Kaur, S. (2009). “Kinetic and equilibrium studies on the removal of Cd2+ ions from water using polyacrylamide grafted rice (Oryza sativa) husk and (Tectonagrandis) saw dust.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 163, 1338-1344.

15. Singh, K.K., Singh, A.K., and Hasan, S.H. (2006). “Low cost biosorbent ‘wheat bran’ for the removal of cadmium from wastewater: Kinetic and equilibrium studies.” J. of Bioresour. Technol., 97, 994-1001.

16. Mohan, D., Pittman, Jr., C.U., Bricka, M., Smith, F., Yancey, B., Mohammad, J., Steele, P.H., Alexandre-Franco, M.F., Gomez-Serrano, V., and Gong, H. (2007). “Sorption of arsenic, cadmium, and lead by chars produced from fast pyrolysis of wood and bark during bio-oil production.” J. of Colloid Interface Sci., 310, 57-73.

17. Srivastava, V.C., Mall, I.D., and Mishra, I.M. (2008). “Adsorption of toxic metal ions onto activated carbon. Study of sorption behaviour through characterization and kinetics.” J. of Chem. Eng. Process., 47,

18. Akhtar, N., Iqbal, J., and Iqbal, M. (2003). “Microalgal- Luffa sponge immobilized disc: A new efficient biosorbent for removal of Ni(II) from aqueous solution.” J. of Lett. Appl. Microbiol., 153, 37-49.

19. Weber, W.J. (1972). Physicochemical processes for water quality control, John Wiley and Sons Inc., New York.

20. Rao, M., Pavwate, A.V., and Bhole, A.G. (2002). “Removal of Cr and Ni from aqueous solution using bagasse and fly ash.” J. of Waste Manage., 22, 821-830.

21. Aly, A.S., Jeon, B.D., and Park, Y.H. (1997). Preparation and evaluation of the chitin derivatives for wastewater treatments, John Wiley and Sons, Inc., USA.

22. Nidheesh, P.V., Gandhimathi, R.S., Ramesh, T., and Singh, T.S.A. (2012). “Adsorption and desorption characteristics of crystal violet in bottom ash column.” J. of Urban and Environmental Engineering, 6,

23. Zhou, D., Zhang, L., Zhou, J., and Guo, S., (2004). “Cellulose/chitin beads for adsorption of heavy metals in aqueous solution.” J. of Water Research, 38, 2643-2650.

24. Aksu, Z., and Gonen, F. (2004). “Biosorption of phenol by immobilized activated sludge in a continuous packed bed: prediction of breakthrough curves.” J. of Process Biochem., 39, 599-613.

25. Padmesh, T.V.N., Vijayaraghavan, K., Sekaran, G., and Velan, M. (2005). “Batch and column studies on biosorption of acid dyes on fresh water macro alga Azollafiliculoides.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 125, 121-129.

26. Ko, D.C.K., Porter, J.F., and McKay, G. (2000). “Optimised correlations for the fixed bed adsorption of metal ions on bone char.” J. of Chem. Eng. Sci., 55, 5819-5829.

27. Ozer, A., Tanyıldızı, M.S., and Tumen, F. (1988). “Study of cadmium adsorption from aqueous solution on activated carbon from sugar beet pulp.” J. of Environ. Technol., 19, 1119-1125.

28. Bhattachary, A.K., and Venkobachar, C. (1984). “Removal of cadmium by low cost adsorbents.” J. Environ. Eng., 110, 110-122.

29. Azouaou, N., Sadaoui, Z., Djaafri, A., and Mokaddem, H. (2010). “Adsorption of cadmium from aqueous solution onto untreated coffee grounds: Equilibrium, kinetics and thermodynamics.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 184, 126-134.

30. Tewari, N., Vasudevan, P., and Guha, B.K. (2005). “Study on biosorption of Cr(VI) by Mucorhiemalis.” Biochem. Eng. J., 23, 185-192.

31. Malkoc, E., Nuhoglu, Y., and Abali, Y. (2006). “Cr(VI) adsorption by waste acorn of Quercusithaburensis in fixed beds: Prediction of breakthrough curves.” Chem. Eng. J., 119, 61-68.

32. Vinodhini, V., and Das, N. (2010). “Packed bed column studies on Cr (VI) removal from tannery wastewater by neem sawdust.” J. of Desalination, 264, 9-14.

33. Goel, J., Kadirvelu, K., Rajagopal, C., and Kumar Garg, V. (2005). “Removal of lead(II) by adsorption using treated granular activated carbon: Batch and column studies.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 125, 211-220.

34. Liao, X., Zhang, M., and Shi, B. (2004). “Collagen-fiber-immobilized tannins and their adsorption of Au(III).” J. of Ind. Eng. Chem. Res., 43, 2222-2227.

35. Sivakumar, P., and Palanisamy, P.N. (2009). “Adsorption studies of basic Red 29 by a non-conventional activated carbon prepared from Euphorbia antiquorum L.” Int. J. of Chem. Tec. Research, 1, 502-510.

36. Baek, K., Song, S., Kang, S., Rhee, Y., Lee, C., Lee, B., Hudson, S., and Hwang, T. (2007). “Adsorption kinetics of boron by anion exchange resin in packed column bed.” J. of Ind. Eng. Chem., 13, 452-456.

37. Zheng, W., Li, X.M., Wang, F., Yang, Q., Deng, P., and Zeng, G.M. (2008). “Adsorption removal of cadmium and copper from aqueous solution by areca: A food waste.” J. of Hazard. Mater., 157, 490-495.