, Volume 24, Issue 5, pp 459–469 | Cite as

Adsorption of arsenic on iron modified attapulgite (Fe/ATP): surface complexation model and DFT studies

  • Hong Pan
  • Huijie Hou
  • Jing ChenEmail author
  • Hongbo Li
  • Linling WangEmail author


The adsorption behaviors of arsenic As(V) on the iron modified attapulgite (Fe/ATP) were studied. Two types of Fe/ATP nanoparticles, including Fe(III)/ATP and Fe(II,III)/ATP were prepared by ultrasonic co-precipitation method and characterized using SEM, XRD, XPS, FT-IR and zeta potential analyses. The adsorption isotherms of As(V) on Fe/ATP were well fitted by Freundlich model. The adsorption kinetics data were followed by the pseudo-second-order model with the pseud-second-order rate constant (k, min−1) of − 0.033 for Fe(III)/ATP and − 0.037 for Fe(II,III)/ATP, respectively. Adsorption capacities of Fe/ATP were 5–6 times higher than ATP (5.2 mg g‒1). The Fe–O(H) groups on Fe/ATP contributed to the strong interaction for As(V), confirmed with FT-IR and XPS analyses. The higher adsorption capacity of Fe(III)/ATP than that of Fe(II,III)/ATP was attributed to more surface hydroxyl groups on Fe(III)/ATP. Surface complexation models and density functional theory calculations demonstrated that As(V) sorption on Fe/ATP was by virtue of the formation of monodentate complexes.


Arsenic Iron modified attapulgite Adsorption Surface complexation model 



The work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41671311), the Project of 356 Innovative and Interdisciplinary Team of Huazhong University of Science and Technology (No. 0118261077), the Key Project in the National Science & Technology Pillar Program during the Twelfth Five-year Plan Period (No. 2015BAB01B04), and Hubei Chenguang Talented Youth Development Foundation. The authors would like to thank the Analytical and Testing Center, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China, for the kind help on sample characterization.

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (DOC 548 KB)
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Supplementary material 2 (DOC 51 KB)


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Environmental Science and EngineeringHuazhong University of Science and TechnologyWuhanPeople’s Republic of China

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