Adsorption of Heavy Metal from Constituent Waste Water by Tea Waste Adsorbent

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Addis Ababa University


Most industries such as electroplating, textile, fertilizer, batteries, leather, and others in less developed countries discharge huge volumes of untreated wastewater into water bodies. The industrial wastewater may contain toxic chemicals in excess of the threshold level when released into the environment, particularly to the aqueous environment and soil; significantly degrade the quality of the water thereby affecting river health substantially and subsequently human health. There are several techniques for removing toxic chemicals such as ion exchange, membrane filtration, adsorption, irradiation and chemical and biological treatments. However, the adsorption method is believed to be the better option because it is cost-effective, efficient, simple and easy to operate, and environmentally friendly according to many studies. Accordingly, this method can be a preferable option for developing countries like Ethiopia, where advanced treatment technologies for high volumes of toxic industrial waste water are unaffordable. The aim of this work was to determine the potential of tea waste (TW) as a useful adsorbent for the removal of copper and zinc ions from aqueous systems. The study was conducted using batch experiments with constituted wastewater having copper and zinc ion concentration of 1000 mg·L-1. The effects of initial concentration, contact time and pH on adsorption efficiency were investigated. Adsorption isotherm was also studied. Generally, the result showed an increase in removal efficiency with increase in contact time, pH and decrease of initial concentration. The adsorption equilibrium data correlate well with Freundlich model and Langmuir model respectively for zinc removal and copper removal with regression coefficient (R2=0.9913, R2=0.981). The results showed that efficiencies of (TW) for the removal of copper and zinc ion were 95.98% and 99.80% respectively at optimum point of 5pH, 10ppm, and 120min. These results clearly indicate the efficiency of tea waste (TW) as a low-cost adsorbent for treatment of wastewater containing copper and zinc ions. Therefore, it is recommended that tea waste can be used, as a low cost and abundant source for the removal of heavy metals as an alternative to more costly materials. KEY WORDS: Copper, zinc, toxicology, adsorption, tea waste, batch study, atomic adsorption spectrometer.



Copper, zinc, Toxicology, Adsorption, Tea waste, Batch study, Atomic adsorption spectrometer