Modified biochar from Moringa seed powder for the removal of diclofenac from aqueous solution

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Environmental Science and Pollution Research


© 2019, The Author(s). In this study, Moringa seed powder (MSP) was pyrolyzed at 450 °C to synthesize Moringa seed powder biochar (MSPB) and treated with phosphoric acid (H3PO4) to synthesize phosphate-modified Moringa seed powder biochar (MSPB-HPO) as an adsorbent for the removal of diclofenac (Dfc) from aqueous solution. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) analysis, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and pH point of zero charge (pHpzc) were conducted to give more insight into the adsorbent’s properties. The SEM analysis showed the transformations in the surface morphology from the parent material to the synthesized materials after the thermal and acid treatment. EDS analysis revealed the variation in the elemental composition of the materials prior to and after adsorption of Dfc ions. The FTIR analysis showed changes and peak intensities of functional groups involved in Dfc removal. The pHpzc showed the charge carried by MSPB-HPO in different pH conditions. Isotherm data best matched the Sips model, and the pseudo-second-order model best described the adsorption kinetics. The maximum adsorption capacity of MSPB-HPO by Sips model was found to be 100.876 mg g−1.

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