Pb(II) removal from aqueous solution by a low-cost adsorbent dry desulfurization slag

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Wu, Q, You, R, Clark, MW & Yu, Y 2014, 'Pb(II) removal from aqueous solution by a low-cost adsorbent dry desulfurization slag', Applied Surface Science, vol. 314, pp. 129-137.

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A collectable and non-sintered material prepared as hollow cylindrical shaped pellet from dry desulfurization slag (FGD ash) and ordinary Portland cement (OPC) for wastewater treatments is tested. The characteristic results of powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) and infrared absorption spectroscopy (IR) show that –OH, CO32−, SO32− and SO42− are the possible functional groups responsible for Pb uptake. Adsorption data indicate that Pb removal is pH dependent and optimal at pH 6, with a very rapid initial removal that reaches equilibrium in about 90 min. A maximum removal of 99.2% is seen for 5 mg/L (pH of 6); higher initial Pb concentrations reduce overall removal efficiencies, but generate higher surface loadings. Adsorption process correlates well with both Langmuir and Freundlich models, although the Langmuir isotherm is more favored, providing a maximum adsorption capacity (QmQm) of 130.2 mg/g (13 wt%). Pseudo-second order rate kinetic model best describes the Pb removal, and calculated RLRL values between 0 and 1, indicate a favored adsorption process that is chemisorption limited. SEM and EDAX analysis of the surface and fracture surface show that Pb occurs as surface precipitates and that Pb is not distributed to the inner core of the pellet. This study demonstrates that dry FGD ash could be successfully used for wastewater Pb removal.