Removal of arsenic from groundwater in West Bengal, India using CuO nanoparticle adsorbent

Abstract

Arsenic contamination in drinking water is a worldwide health crisis. Treatment of arsenic laden water in areas of the world such as West Bengal, India has proven to be an extremely difficult task. Practical and reliable treatment technologies that can overcome the socioeconomic and geochemical barriers present in these areas of the world must be developed. Cupric Oxide (CuO) nanoparticles have shown promising characteristics as a sorbent to remove arsenic from water. Presented in this study is, to our knowledge, the first time CuO nanoparticles have been used to treat groundwater from West Bengal that is naturally high in arsenic. Batch experiments were conducted by reacting CuO nanoparticles with sixteen groundwater samples from West Bengal that exceed 10 µg/L. All samples showed near complete removal of arsenic following the treatment with CuO nanoparticles. The removal of arsenic was unaffected by the presence of high concentrations of competing ions such as bicarbonate (HCO3 ), phosphate (PO4 3−), and sulfate (SO4 2−). The CuO nanoparticle treatment showed no major affect on other water constituents. Overall, the results of this study suggest that CuO nanoparticles show potential as an effective sorbent of arsenic under diverse geochemical makeups.

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Acknowledgments

The authors would like to thank the University of Wyoming and Jawaharlal Nehru University for providing the facilities and resources used in this research.

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Correspondence to K. J. Reddy.

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McDonald, K.J., Reddy, K.J., Singh, N. et al. Removal of arsenic from groundwater in West Bengal, India using CuO nanoparticle adsorbent. Environ Earth Sci 73, 3593–3601 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12665-014-3645-3

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Keywords

  • Arsenic removal
  • Arsenic contamination
  • Arsenate
  • Arsenite
  • Arsenic toxicity
  • CuO sorbent