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Preparation of natural zeolite supported TiO2 composites for removal of terephthalic acid
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This study focuses on the preparation of natural zeolite supported TiO2 composites for the removal of model pollutant, terepththalic acid (TPA) via sorption. Natural zeolite was purified and used to prepare natural zeolite supported TiO2 adsorbents. Prior to sorption, the adsorbents were characterized by Scanning Electron Microscopy, Volumetric Adsorption Instrument, X-ray Diffractometer, Fourier Transformer Infrared, Induced Coupled Plasma Atomic Emmision Spectroscopy, and Thermal Gravimetric Analyzer. It was deduced that natural zeolite was clinoptilolite rich low (Ca) silicate. The sorption studies of TPA on adsorbents were applied in dark conditions at room temperature by altering adsorbent amount (0.2-1.5 g/l) and initial TPA concentration (20-60 ppm). It was observed that the amount of adsorbed TPA per unit mass of adsorbent decreased with increasing adsorbent amount, and sorption percent was unchanged (about 72%). This can be explained by the affinity of adsorbents to water molecules more than TPA molecules. Much more number of TPA molecules was allocated on the clinoptilolite than TiO2 composites. Sorption mechanism was identified by fitting the kinetic data to diffusion (Weber-Morris model, intraparticle/external diffusion) and reaction models (First order and pseudo second order model). First order reaction model was well correlated to experimental data for sorption process. Comparing pore size of the adsorbents to molecular size of TPA indicates that main contribution to intraparticle diffusion was the intercrystalline diffusion. Intraparticle diffusion was not the sole rate-limiting step due to the existence of external resistance. Biot and Weber-Morris calculations corroborated these results. In the future, photocatalytic performance of these adsorbents will also be tested.