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Water Science & Technology Vol 56 No 9 pp 95–101 © IWA Publishing 2007 doi:10.2166/wst.2007.682

Modification of granular activated carbon using low molecular weight polymer for enhanced removal of Cu2 +  from aqueous solution

C.Y. Yin*, M.K. Aroua** and W.M.A.W. Daud**

*Faculty of Chemical Engineering, Universiti Teknologi MARA, 40450 Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia (E-mail: yinyang@salam.uitm.edu.my)
**Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, 50603 , Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (E-mail: mk_aroua@um.edu.my; ashri@um.edu.my)


Palm shell activated carbon was modified via surface impregnation with polyethyleneimine (PEI) to enhance removal of Cu2 +  from aqueous solution in this study. The effect of PEI modification on batch adsorption of Cu2 +  as well as the equilibrium behavior of adsorption of metal ions on activated carbon were investigated. PEI modification clearly increased the Cu2 +  adsorption capacities by 68% and 75.86% for initial solution pH of 3 and 5 respectively. The adsorption data of Cu2 +  on both virgin and PEI-modified AC for both initial solution pH of 3 and 5 fitted the Langmuir and Redlich–Peterson isotherms considerably better than the Freundlich isotherm.

Keywords: Adsorption; chelating polymer; copper; palm shell activated carbon

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