Sorption properties of the activated carbon-zeolite composite prepared from coal fly ash for Ni2+, Cu2+, Cd2+ and Pb2+

Vinay Kumar Jha, Motohide Matsuda, Michihiro Miyake

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127 Citations (Scopus)


Composite materials of activated carbon and zeolite have been prepared successfully by activating coal fly ash (CFA) by fusion with NaOH at 750 °C in N2 followed by hydrothermal treatments under various conditions. Uptake experiments for Ni2+, Cu2+, Cd2+ and Pb2+ were performed with the materials thus obtained from CFA. Of the various composite materials, that were obtained by hydrothermal treatment with NaOH solution (ca. 4 M) at 80 °C (a composite of activated carbon and zeolite X/faujasite) proved to be the most suitable for the uptake of toxic metal ions. The relative selectivity of the present sorbents for the various ions was Pb2+ > Cu2+ > Cd2+ > Ni2+, with equilibrium uptake capacities of 2.65, 1.72, 1.44 and 1.20 mmol/g, respectively. The sorption isotherm was a good fit to the Langmuir isotherm and the sorption is thought to progress mainly by ion exchange with Na+. The overall reaction is pseudo-second order with rate constants of 0.14, 0.17, 0.21 and 0.20 L g/mmol min for the uptake of Pb2+, Cu2+, Cd2+ and Ni2+, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)148-153
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 15 2008


  • Coal fly ash
  • Composite materials
  • Retention of metals
  • Toxic metal ions
  • Zeolite

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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