Phenol adsorption onto powdered and granular activated carbon, prepared from Eucalyptus wood

Publication Type:

Journal Article


J Colloid Interface Sci, Volume 279, Number 2, p.357-63 (2004)


0021-9797 (Print)

Accession Number:



Adsorption, Carbon/ chemistry, Eucalyptus/chemistry, Particle Size, Phenol/ chemistry, Surface Properties, Temperature, Time Factors, Wood


Eucalyptus grandis sawdust, a major waste from the growing Uruguayan wood industry, was used in previous work to prepare powdered activated carbon (PAC). In the present work, granular activated carbon (GAC) was prepared by mixing PAC, carboxymethyl cellulose as a binder, and kaolin as reinforcer. Ultimate analysis and surface characterization of GAC and PAC were performed. Phenol adsorption was used as a way to compare the characteristics of different PAC and GAC preparations. Kinetics and isotherms of the different GAC and PAC were performed in a shaking bath at 100 rpm and 298 K. Phenol concentrations were determined by UV spectroscopy. Some kinetics parameters were calculated; from kinetics results, external resistance to mass transfer from the bulk liquid can be neglected as the controlling step. Isotherms were fitted to Langmuir and Freundlich models, and corresponding parameters were determined. Maximum phenol uptakes for all carbons were determined and correlated with carbon characteristics. Thermogravimertic analysis (TGA) determinations were performed in order to study adsorption characteristics and conditions for GAC regeneration after its use. The results showed that phenol is preferentially physisorbed on the carbon of the granules, though some chemisorption was detected. No adsorption was detected in the kaolin-carboxymethyl cellulose mixture.


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