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  • Graphene-supported nanoscale zero-valent iron: removal of phosphorus from aqueous solution and mechanistic study.

Graphene-supported nanoscale zero-valent iron: removal of phosphorus from aqueous solution and mechanistic study.

Journal of environmental sciences (China) (2014-08-12)
Fenglin Liu, JingHe Yang, Jiane Zuo, Ding Ma, Lili Gan, Bangmi Xie, Pei Wang, Bo Yang
ABSTRACT

Excess phosphorus from non-point pollution sources is one of the key factors causing eutrophication in many lakes in China, so finding a cost-effective method to remove phosphorus from non-point pollution sources is very important for the health of the aqueous environment. Graphene was selected to support nanoscale zero-valent iron (nZVI) for phosphorus removal from synthetic rainwater runoff in this article. Compared with nZVI supported on other porous materials, graphene-supported nZVI (G-nZVI) could remove phosphorus more efficiently. The amount of nZVI in G-nZVI was an important factor in the removal of phosphorus by G-nZVI, and G-nZVI with 20 wt.% nZVI (20% G-nZVI) could remove phosphorus most efficiently. The nZVI was very stable and could disperse very well on graphene, as characterized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), Fourier Transform infrared spectroscopy (FT-IR) and Raman spectroscopy were used to elucidate the reaction process, and the results indicated that Fe-O-P was formed after phosphorus was adsorbed by G-nZVI. The results obtained from X-ray diffraction (XRD) indicated that the reaction product between nZVI supported on graphene and phosphorus was Fe₃(PO₄)₂·8H₂O (Vivianite). It was confirmed that the specific reaction mechanism for the removal of phosphorus with nZVI or G-nZVI was mainly due to chemical reaction between nZVI and phosphorus.

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