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Removal of Trace Arsenic Based on Biomimetic Separation

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journal contribution
posted on 14.01.2015, 00:00 by Bo Sun, Hao Zhai, Li-Bing Zhang, Chun-Xue Zhang, Xin-Shi Wu
A novel method was proposed to determine the key species (ions or function groups) with strong arsenic fixation capacity as well as the auxiliary species in the fixation. The elements and species involved in the fixation of arsenic were surmised based on the change of the elemental composition in a plant’s roots, and their roles in the fixation of heavy metals were assessed using simulated precipitation and adsorption of arsenic under near-physiological conditions (20–35 °C and pH 6–7.5) using chemicals containing the surmised species. The results showed that copper­(II) hydroxide and/or carbonate possessed strong AsV fixation capacity, while Fe3+ ions played an auxiliary role in the precipitation of AsV. A combination of Fe2+ and HS/S2– ions or a combination of Fe2+ ions and −SH groups had strong AsIII fixation capacity. On the basis of the obtained information, an adsorbent using the components (species), which commonly exist in plants, was designed and prepared. The adsorbent was excellent in removing trace AsIII, with residual concentrations as low as 0.03 mg/L.