Modified Ceramic Adsorbents for the Removal of Oxyanion Water Pollutants

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Krzynski, Nathan
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More than 2 billion people across the globe do not have the access to safe drinking water. Heavy metals and metalloids, such as the recalcitrant oxyanion pollutant Selenium (Se), are among the most widespread waterborne contaminants. Se is primarily used in the manufacture of glassware, production of electronic equipment, and in metal processing. Soluble forms of Se ions (i.e., Se(IV) and Se(VI)) are able to seep into groundwater, putting people as well as the environment at risk of exposure. Contact with significant amounts of Se has a wide range of negative health effects and in extreme cases can be fatal. This project focuses on the development of highly efficient and low-cost water filtration materials for the adsorptive removal of Se. Low-cost granular ceramic materials coated with Lanthanum (La) that exhibit a positive charge and strong interaction with the target Se, are used for the adsorption process. The adsorption of Se was studied as a function of time, particle concentration, total Se concentration, and Se speciation.