Research on Chemical Intermediates

, Volume 41, Issue 2, pp 559–573 | Cite as

Biosorption of lanthanum and cerium from aqueous solutions by grapefruit peel: equilibrium, kinetic and thermodynamic studies

  • Meisam Torab-MostaediEmail author
  • Mehdi Asadollahzadeh
  • Alireza Hemmati
  • Amir Khosravi


The biosorption characteristics of lanthanum and cerium ions from aqueous solution by grapefruit peel have been investigated as a function of pH, biosorbent dosage, contact time, and temperature. The pH was found to be significantly affecting the biosorption performance: pH 5.0 was found to be an optimum pH for favorable biosorption of lanthanum and cerium ions. The experimental isotherm data were analyzed using Langmuir and Freundlich equations. The Langmuir model fits the equilibrium data better than the Freundlich model. According to the Langmuir equation, the maximum uptake for La(III) and Ce(III) ions were 171.20 and 159.30 mg/g, respectively. Pseudo-first-order and pseudo-second-order models were used to represent the kinetics of the process. The results show that the pseudo-second-order model is the one that best describes the kinetics of the biosorption of both metal ions. The calculated thermodynamic parameters (ΔG°, ΔH°, and ΔS°) show that the biosorption process is feasible, spontaneous, and endothermic at 20–50 °C. FTIR analysis demonstrates that carboxyl and hydroxyl groups are involved in the biosorption of the metal ions. This study shows that grapefruit peel has the potential of application as an efficient biosorbent for the removal of lanthanide elements from aqueous solutions.


Biosorption Lanthanum Cerium Grapefruit peel Isotherm Kinetic 

List of symbols


Metal concentration at equilibrium (mg/L)


Final metal ion concentration (mg/L)


Initial metal concentration (mg/L)


Gibbs free energy change (J/mol)


Enthalpy change (J/mol)


Pseudo-first-order rate constant of the sorption (1/min)


Pseudo-second-order rate constant of the sorption [g/(mg min−1)]


Distribution coefficient (mL/g)


Langmuir model constant (L/mg)


Freundlich model constant


Mass of the biosorbent (g)


Freundlich sorption intensity


Amount of adsorbed metal per weight of biosorbent at equilibrium (mg/g)


Maximum metal sorption capacity from Langmuir model (mg/g)


Amount of adsorbed metal per weight of biosorbent at time t (mg/g)


Universal gas constant (8.314 J/mol K)


Separation factor (−)


Entropy change (J/mol K)


Time (min)


Absolute temperature (K)


Volume of metal solution (L)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Meisam Torab-Mostaedi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Mehdi Asadollahzadeh
    • 1
    • 2
  • Alireza Hemmati
    • 2
  • Amir Khosravi
    • 3
  1. 1.Nuclear Fuel Cycle Research SchoolNuclear Science and Technology Research InstituteTehranIran
  2. 2.Department of Chemical EngineeringIran University of Science and TechnologyTehranIran
  3. 3.Young Researchers Club, North Tehran branchIslamic Azad UniversityTehranIran

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