Date: 23 Feb 2014

Sorption characteristics of peat of Brunei Darussalam IV: equilibrium, thermodynamics and kinetics of adsorption of methylene blue and malachite green dyes from aqueous solution

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Peat of Brunei Darussalam shows a great potential for the removal of methylene blue (MB) and malachite green (MG) dyes from aqueous solution. Carefully controlled batch experiments performed by changing one parameter at a time indicate that the optimum time periods of agitation and settling required for maximum removal of MB are 2.0 and 1.0 h, respectively, while these values for MG are 4.0 and 1.0 h, respectively. The optimum pH is determined to be the ambient value, and under the optimum conditions, 90 % removal of both dyes was determined under laboratory conditions. The equilibrium adsorption data analyzed for various isotherm models suggest that the Sips and Redlich–Peterson (R–P) models are valid for MB and MG, respectively. Further, thermodynamic studies show that the adsorption of both dyes on peat is spontaneous and endothermic. The adsorption capacities (q max) of MB and MG dyes on peat are 0.45 and 0.31 mmol g−1, respectively. Characterization of the surfaces of peat before and after treatment of dyes by SEM and FTIR provides conclusive evidence of adsorption of both dyes. Kinetics studies indicate that the adsorption of both MB and MG dyes is favored toward the pseudo-second-order model, with a little contribution of MG to the pseudo-first-order model. These results suggest that peat is a potential low-cost adsorbent for the removal of MB and MG dyes.