Activated carbon from molasses efficiency for Cr(VI), Pb(II) and Cu(II) adsorption: A mechanistic study
K. Legrouri, E. Khouya, H. Hannache, M. El Hartti, M. Ezzine and R. Naslain
Activated carbon was prepared from molasses, which are natural precursors of vegetable origin resulting from the sugar industry. A simple elaboration process, based on chemical activation with phosphoric acid, was proposed. The final
product, prepared by activation of molasses/phosphoric acid mixture in air at 500°C, presented high surface area (more than 1400 m2/g) and important maximum adsorption capacity for methylene blue (625 mg/g) and iodine (1660
mg/g). The activated carbon (MP2(500)) showed a good potential for the adsorption of Cr(VI), Cu(II) and Pb(II) from aqueous solutions. The affinity for the three ions was observed in the following order Cu2+ Cr6+ Pb2+. The process is
governed by monolayer adsorption following the Langmuir model, with a correlation coefficient close to unity.