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PloS one

Removal of vanadium(III) and molybdenum(V) from wastewater using Posidonia oceanica (Tracheophyta) biomass.


PMID 24204692

Abstract

The use of dried and re-hydrated biomass of the seagrass Posidonia oceanica was investigated as an alternative and -low-cost biomaterial for removal of vanadium(III) and molybdenum(V) from wastewaters. Initial characterisation of this biomaterial identified carboxylic groups on the cuticle as potentially responsible for cation sorption, and confirmed the toxic-metal bioaccumulation. The combined effects on biosorption performance of equilibrium pH and metal concentrations were investigated in an ideal single-metal system and in more real-life multicomponent systems. There were either with one metal (vanadium or molybdenum) and sodium nitrate, as representative of high ionic strength systems, or with the two metals (vanadium and molybdenum). For the single-metal solutions, the optimum was at pH 3, where a significant proportion of vanadium was removed (ca. 70%) while there was ca. 40% adsorption of molybdenum. The data obtained from the more real-life multicomponent systems showed that biosorption of one metal was improved both by the presence of the other metal and by high ionic strength, suggesting a synergistic effect on biosorption rather than competition. There data ware used for the development of a simple multi-metal equilibrium model based on the non-competitive Langmuir approach, which was successfully fitted to experimental data and represents a useful support tool for the prediction of biosorption performance in such real-life systems. Overall, the results suggest that biomass of P. oceanica can be used as an efficient biosorbent for removal of vanadium(III) and molybdenum(V) from aqueous solutions. This process thus offers an eco-compatible solution for the reuse of the waste material of leaves that accumulate on the beach due to both human activities and to storms at sea.

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208272
Vanadium(III) chloride, 97%
Cl3V