Environmental Monitoring and Assessment

, Volume 186, Issue 6, pp 3875–3890 | Cite as

Almond shell activated carbon: adsorbent and catalytic support in the phenol degradation

  • Abdessalem OmriEmail author
  • Mourad Benzina


In this work, two technologies are studied for the removal of phenol from aqueous solution: dynamic adsorption onto activated carbon and photocatalysis. Almond shell activated carbon (ASAC) was used as adsorbent and catalytic support in the phenol degradation process. The prepared catalyst by deposition of anatase TiO2 on the surface of activated carbon was characterized by scanning electron microscopy, sorption of nitrogen, X-ray diffraction, Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy, and pHZPC point of zero charge. In the continuous adsorption experiments, the effects of flow rate, bed height, and solution temperature on the breakthrough curves have been studied. The breakthrough curves were favorably described by the Yoon–Nelson model. The photocatalytic degradation of phenol has been investigated at room temperature using TiO2-coated activated carbon as photocatalyst (TiO2/ASAC). The degradation reaction was optimized with respect to the phenol concentration and catalyst amount. The kinetics of disappearance of the organic pollutant followed an apparent first-order rate. The findings demonstrated the applicability of ASAC for the adsorptive and catalytic treatment of phenol.


Almond shell activated carbon Adsorption Breakthrough Photocatalysis Phenol 



We are grateful to the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research for the financial support to the current work.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Water-Energy-Environment (LR3E), code: AD-10-02, National School of Engineers of SfaxUniversity of SfaxSfaxTunisia

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