Batch Sorption Studies of Aqueous Cadmium and Lead from Contaminated Water onto Selected Biosorbents

Time: Fri 2019-10-25 14.00

Location: F3, Lindstedtsvägen 26, KTH Campus, STOCKHOLM (English)

Subject area: Land and Water Resources Engineering

Doctoral student: Grace Kizito Bakyayita , Vatten- och miljöteknik, Makerere University, Kyambogo University, Land and Water Resources Engineering

Opponent: Biträdande Professor Ann-Margret Hvitt Strömvall, Chalmers

Supervisor: Docent Ann-Catrine Norrström, Vatten- och miljöteknik; Senior Lecturer Robinah N. Kulabako, Makerere University; Lecturer Maimuna Nalubega, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda; Dr Roger Thunvik, Retired


Groundwater, wastewater, surface runoff and surface water samples from Lake Victoria basin, Uganda was assessed for trace metals contamination. Untreated, base-treated and peroxide-treated biosorbents from Albizia coriaria, Coffea canephora, Cyperus papyrus, Erythrina abyssinica and Musa spp were investigated for removal of selected trace metals from contaminated water in batch studies. The assessed shallow groundwater and surface water was contaminated with iron and manganese. Selected speciation studies using Visual MINTEQ showed that in leachates from Municipal dumpsites 74% of the metal ions were bound to DOM, 13% were free ions and 13% were in inorganic forms moreover for urban streams 37% of the metal ions were bound to DOM, 44% were free ions and 19% were in inorganic forms. The metal levels in surface water, landfill leachate and surface runoff showed elevated levels and revealed increased risks to environmental health. Risk analysis based on the Swedish EPA showed that varied risks of negative effects in 30% – 76% of the sample sites ranging from high to increased risk in surface water whereas the results from Bio-met tool showed potential risk to toxicity effects of Cu2+, Ni2+, Zn2+ and Pb2+ in 15.3% - 30.8% surface water samples and 8.3% - 62.5% groundwater samples. Batch sorption studies revealed that the optimal conditions for Cd2+ and Pb2+ ions uptake were; pH 3.5 – 5.0 for contact time 3.0 – 3.5 hours and biosorbent dosage 10 – 12.5 g/L. Base-treated biosorbents showed 10 – 17 % sorption enhancement for Cd2+ ions and 1.6 – 2.3 % uptake reduction for Pb2+ ions. The biomass negative potential for binding base cations was in the order; Musa spp. > A. coriaria > E. abyssinica and base treatment reduced DOC leaching from biosorbents in the order; E. abyssinica > A. coriaria > Musa spp. Speciation studies showed that more ions were complexed to DOC in solutions at various pH levels. The maximum sorption intensities for both Cd2+ and Pb2+ ions uptake onto biomass occurred for low initial metal concentration; 5 mg/L. Freundlich model best fitted data for Pb2+ ions ions uptake whereas Temkin model fitted the sorption data for Cd2+ ions onto both treated and untreated biomass. For peroxide treated biomass, the maximum sorption efficiencies for both Cd2+ and Pb2+ ions were between 95.2 – 98.7% for C.canephora, 79.9 – 92.2% for Musa spp. and 42.0 – 91.3% for C.papyrus in non-competitive media and 90.8 – 98.0% for C.canephora, 56.4 – 89.3% for Musa spp. and 19.5 – 90.4% for C.papyrus in competitive media. The Langmiur model fitted non-competitive sorption data with 0.769 ≤ R2 ≥ 0.999 and the Freundlich model fitted competitive sorption data with 0.867 ≤ R2 ≥ 0.989. The pseudo second order kinetic model fitted the sorption data for Cd2+ and Pb2+ ions for untreated, peroxide treated and base treated biomass with 0.917 ≤ R2 ≥ 1.000. The sorption of trace metals was a complex potentially monolayer chemisorption with heterogeneous surface properties exhibited. In competitive sorption, sorption suppression effects observed were greater for Cd2+ than Pb2+ ions. The comparative studies on sorption performance presented agreement and no significant difference between the untreated and base treated biosorbents.

Belongs to: School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE)
Last changed: Sep 26, 2019