One-pot hydrothermal synthesis of magnetic N-doped sludge biochar for efficient removal of tetracycline from various environmental waters

Yongfei Ma, Tingmei Lu, Jiayi Tang, Ping Li, Ondřej Mašek, Lie Yang, Li Wu, Liuyang He, Yongzhen Ding, Feng Gao, Xuebin Qi, Zulin Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Efficient removal of zwitterionic tetracycline (TC) from water is a critical environmental challenge which is not fully addressed by conventional treatment technologies. A magnetic N-doped sludge biochar (MNSBC) was the first time synthesized by a simple one-pot hydrothermal method. The maximum adsorption capacity of MNSBC for TC was 197.3 mg/g at 298 K. Solution pH, ionic species/strength and humic acid concentration were the critical factors affecting TC adsorption by MNSBC. Elovich and Freundlich models better describing the experimental data illustrated that TC adsorption onto MNSBC was a multi-layer physicochemical adsorption process. Lewis acid-base, π-π conjugation, electrostatic interactions and pore filling were the main adsorption mechanisms. MNSBC also exhibited excellent adsorption performance for TC in various environmental waters, which achieved removal rates of up to 91.6%, 89.0%, 82.0% and 80.8% in mineral, tap, lake and river waters, respectively. The magnetic susceptibility of MNSBC allowed it to be easily collected after adsorption. Regeneration using NaOH could maintain its sustainable adsorption performance. Furthermore, MNSBC showed a very low release levels of iron and total nitrogen at all pH ranges (from 3 to 11), which suggested its suitability for water treatment applications. This study developed a simple technology for synthesis of effective TC adsorbent for different environmental waters and identified a circular economy pathway to reuse of water industry wastes.
Original languageEnglish
Article number121426
JournalSeparation and Purification Technology
Early online date7 Jun 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 7 Jun 2022

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