Removal of arsenic from contaminated water utilizing tea waste
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Activated carbon is the adsorbent commonly used to remove arsenic from contaminated water. However, the problem is that it is not always available everywhere and considered expensive in developing countries. An inexpensive alternative to activated carbon can therefore aid the adequate treatment of contaminated water. Tea waste, water hyacinth and banana peel are investigated extensively in this study as the inexpensive alternative. Tea waste treated with a right proportion of aqueous FeCl3 reagent is found to have substantially higher arsenic removing capacity (which is quantified by arsenic concentrations measured employing Double Beam Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer) than the other two. The comparison made subsequently between tea waste and activated carbon reveals the feasibility of the utilization of tea waste. The arsenic removing capacity of tea waste treated with the right proportion of aqueous FeCl3 reagent is found to be equal to that of the activated carbon treated with the same reagent over the continuous operative time of 2 h. The tea waste treated rightly with the same reagent also removes arsenic at acceptable capacities over extended operative times such as 4–6 h. It is therefore proposed to consider tea waste as the inexpensive alternative to activated carbon in treating arsenic contaminated water.
KeywordsTea waste Arsenic Water Activated carbon Adsorption Water treatment
Supports from the Department of Chemical Engineering, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology, and Bangladesh Council of Scientific and Industrial Research are gratefully acknowledged.
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