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Lead (II) and ammonium exchange on Na form of Gördes clinoptilolite

Aşiroğlu, Sedat
Natural zeolites, especially clinoptilolite, have the ability of removing certain cations from wastewater by utilizing ion exchange and adsorption. In this study, ion exchange behaviour of Gördes clinoptilolite at particle size range (0.5-0.25 mm) for lead and ammonium removal was investigated to establish the conditions under which clinoptilolite may be used in an economical and effective manner. Experiments were divided into two parts. Batch and continuous (column) experiments were carried out. In the batch experiments, experimental isotherms of NH4+-Na+, Pb2+-Na+ binary systems and NH4+-Pb2+-Na+ ternary system were obtained as the graphs of equivalent fractions of exchanging cation in solution versus equivalent fractions of cation in zeolite. It was determined that clinoptilolite has affinity for Pb2+ and NH4+ ions. Finally, the selectivity sequence of Gördes clinoptilolite in the presence of Pb2+ and NH4+ together was determined as Pb2+ > NH4+ > Na+. In the column studies, removal of lead, ammonium and simultaneous removal of lead-ammonium solutions were investigated. The loading flow rates were selected as 8, 15, and 30 mL/min. The ion exchange capacity of clinoptilolite for lead and ammonium removal showed good performance. Flow rates at 8, 15, 30 mL/min, breakthrough capacities were found as 0.398 meq/g (Pb2+) and 0.337 meq/g (NH4+), 0.299 meq/g (Pb2+) and 0.297 meq/g (NH4+), 0.197 meq/g (Pb2+) and 0.198 meq/g (NH4+) for lead-ammonium-sodium system and corresponding column efficiencies were 63.36%, 51.38%, 34.05%, respectively.