Focusing on SEM and FT-IR Studies on Nature of Adsorption of Mercury(II) and Chromium(VI) from Wastewater Using Chemically Activated Syzygium jambolanum Nut Carbon

The chemically activated carbon prepared from Syzygium jambolanum nut [CHSJC], an agricultural
waste, after activation with ammonium persulphate, an oxidizing chemical in the presence of
sulphuric acid followed by thermal activation by modified dolomite process was successfully used to
remove mercury(II) and chromium(VI) from wastewater in batch studies by adsorption process.
Surface morphology of the carbon was analyzed by scanning electron microscope (SEM) before and
after the adsorption of Hg(II) and Cr(VI) and the results revealed the presence of micropores which
are responsible for adsorption. Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopic studies of the carbon
showed that physio-sorption took place on the surface of the carbon and the functional groups
responsible for adsorption. SEM and FT-IR analysis of high temperature activated Syzygium
jambolanum
nut carbon [HSJC] and a commercial activated carbon (CAC) before and after the
adsorption of Hg(II) and Cr(VI) were also carried out for comparison purposes. Based on the
experimental analysis of carbon prepared from Syzygium jambolanum nut before and after adsorption
of Hg(II) and Cr(VI) with SEM studies, it was found out that micropores were responsible for
adsorption. More inorganic deposits present in the pores of CHSJC than HSJC and CAC showed that
CHSJC was superior to HSJC and CAC for the removal of mercury(II) and chromium(VI) from
wastewater which was also in line with the results from batch studies. From FT-IR spectral analysis, it
could be concluded that there was exclusive physio-sorption of Hg(II) and Cr(VI) on CHSJC, HSJC
and CAC.

Author (s) Details

Dr. S. Sophie Beulah
Government College of Engineering, Tirunelveli – 627 007, Tamilnadu, India.

Dr. K. Muthukumaran
Hindusthan College of Engineering & Technology, Coimbatore – 641 032, Tamilnadu, India.

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