Water, Air, & Soil Pollution

, Volume 220, Issue 1–4, pp 131–140 | Cite as

Kinetic and Removal Mechanisms of Ethylbenzene from Contaminated Solutions by Chitin and Chitosan

  • Maryam Mohamed
  • Sabeha K. OukiEmail author


In this study, the efficiency of chitin and chitosan toward the removal of ethylbenzene from aqueous solutions was investigated. Batch adsorption experiments of ethylbenzene-contaminated waters (5–200 mg/L) were carried out to evaluate the removal performance. Ethylbenzene uptake was determined from the changes in concentration, as the residual concentration was measured by gas chromatography with mass spectroscopy. The results indicated that the adsorption of ethylbenzene by chitin and chitosan were in agreement with the Langmuir isotherm, for two parameters model, and Redlich–Peterson isotherm, for three parameters model. A maximum removal percentage of 65% of ethylbenzene can be achieved using chitosan as adsorbent material. The adsorption capacity of ethylbenzene followed the order chitosan > chitin. The pseudo-second order rate model described best the adsorption kinetics of ethylbenzene for the two selected adsorbents. The kinetic studies also revealed that the pore diffusion is not the only rate controlling step in the removal of ethylbenzene. Overall, the study demonstrated that chitosan is a potential adsorbent for the removal of ethylbenzene at concentrations as high as 200 mg/L.


Chitin Chitosan Ethylbenzene Adsorption isotherms Adsorption kinetics 



Langmuir constant or the maximum adsorbent-phase concentration of adsorbate when surface sites are saturated with adsorbate (milligrammes adsorbate/grammes adsorbent)


Redlich–Peterson isotherm constant (litres per milligram) to the beta root


Langmuir constant or constant that is related to the free energy of adsorption


Temkin isotherm constant


Dubinin–Radushkevich isotherm constant


Temkin isotherm constant


Initial adsorbate concentration (milligrammes per litre)


Residual adsorbate concentration at equilibrium (milligrammes per litre)


Mean free energy of adsorption (kilojoules per gramme)


Initial sorption rate (milligrammes per gramme·hour)


Intercept of intra-particle diffusion equation (milligrammes per gramme)


Constant of Bangham’s equation (grammes)


Intra-particle diffusion rate constant (milligrams per (grams per square root of hour))


Freundlich constant (milligrams per gram) ((milligrams per litre) to the nth root)


Overall pseudo-first order rate constant (per hour)


Redlich–Peterson isotherm constant (litres per gramme)


Temkin isotherm constant (litres per milligramme)


Overall pseudo-second order rate constant (grammes per milligramme·hour))


Amount of adsorbent used per litre of solution (grammes per litre)


Amount of solid adsorbent material used (grammes)


Freundlich constant that indicate the intensity of the adsorption


Dubinin-Radushkevich isotherm constant (milligrammes per gramme)


Universal gas constant 8.314 J/mol K


Dimensionless separation factor


Correlation coefficient


Absolute temperature (kelvin)


Time (hours)


Volume of adsorbate solution (millilitres)


Amount of adsorbate adsorbed at time (milligrammes)

Greek Letters


Exponent in Redlich–Peterson equation


Constant of Bangham’s equation


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Environmental Health EngineeringUniversity of SurreySurreyUK

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