Removal of Hg2+ by carboxyl-terminated hyperbranched poly(amidoamine) dendrimers grafted superparamagnetic nanoparticles as an efficient adsorbent

  • Azam Alsadat Tabatabaiee Bafrooee
  • Homayon Ahmad PanahiEmail author
  • Elham Moniri
  • Mahsasadat Miralinaghi
  • Amir Hesam Hasani
Research Article


In this research, carboxyl-terminated hyperbranched poly(amidoamine) dendrimers grafted superparamagnetic nanoparticles (CT-HPMNPs) with core-shell structure were synthesized by the chemical co-precipitation method, the core of superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles and a shell of polyamidoamines (PAMAM) and carboxyl groups, as a novel adsorbent for removing Hg2+ from aqueous systems. The surface of the particles was modified by 3-(aminopropyl) triethoxysilane, and finally, PAMAM and carboxyl dendrimers were grown on the surface up to 5.5 generation. The synthesized polymer was characterized physically and morphologically using different techniques. Also, they were evaluated in terms of adsorption capacity to remove inorganic pollutants of Hg2+, selectivity, and reusability. The adsorption mechanism Hg2+ onto CT-HPMNPs was investigated by single-step and two-step isotherms that the adsorption capacity of Hg2+ obtained 72.3 and 32.88 mg g−1 respectively at pH 5, adsorbent dosage 2 g L−1, Hg2+ initial concentrations 20 mg L−1, contact time 60 min, and temperature of 298 K by CT-HPMNPs. Also, the kinetics of Hg2+ followed the pseudo-second-order model and adsorption isotherms of Hg2+ onto CT-HPMNPs were fitted well by Freundlich (as a single-step) and two-step adsorption models with a correlation coefficient of 0.9997 and 0.9999 respectively. The results showed a significant potential of Hg2+ ions removing from industrial wastewater and spiked water by CT-HPMNPs.


Hg2+ Superparamagnetic nanoparticles Core-shell structure PAMAM dendrimers Carboxyl groups Adsorption capacity 



The authors gratefully acknowledge the support of the Department of Natural Resources and Environment, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors report no conflicts of interest. The authors alone are responsible for the content and writing of this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Natural Resources and Environment, Science and Research BranchIslamic Azad UniversityTehranIran
  2. 2.Department of Chemistry, Central Tehran BranchIslamic Azad UniversityTehranIran
  3. 3.Department of Chemistry, Varamin (Pishva) BranchIslamic Azad UniversityTehranIran

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