Selective removal of copper(II) from natural waters by nanoporous sorbents functionalized with chelating diamines

Wilaiwan Chouyyok, Yongsoon Shin, Joseph Davidson, William D. Samuels, Nikki H. Lafemina, Ryan D. Rutledge, Glen E. Fryxell, Thanapon Sangvanich, Wassana Yantasee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

94 Scopus citations


Copper has been identified as a pollutant of concern by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) because of its widespread occurrence and toxic impact in the environment. Three nanoporous sorbents containing chelating diamine functionalities were evaluated for Cu2+ adsorption from natural waters: ethylenediamine functionalized self-assembled monolayers on mesoporous supports (EDA-SAMMS), ethylene-diaminefunctionalized activated carbon (AC-CH2-EDA), and 1,10-phenanthroline functionalized mesoporous carbon (Phen-FMC). The pH dependence of Cu2+ sorption, Cu 2+ sorption capacities, rates, and selectivity of the sorbents were determined and compared with those of commercial sorbents (Chelex-100 ion-exchange resin and Darco KB-B activated carbon). All three chelating diamine sorbents showed excellent Cu2+ removal (∼ 95-99%) from river water and seawater over the pH range 6.0-8.0. EDA-SAMMS and AC-CH 2-EDA demonstrated rapid Cu2+ sorption kinetics (minutes) and good sorption capacities (26 and 17 mg Cu/g sorbent, respectively) in seawater, whereas Phen-FMC had excellent selectivity for Cu2+ over other metal ions (e.g., Ca2+,Fe2+,Ni2+, and Zn2+) and was able to achieve Cu below the EPA recommended levels for river and sea waters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6390-6395
Number of pages6
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number16
StatePublished - Aug 15 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry


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