Optimized production of coal fly ash derived synthetic zeolites for mercury removal from wastewater

Tauanov, Z. and Shah, D. and Itskos, G. and Inglezakis, V. (2017) Optimized production of coal fly ash derived synthetic zeolites for mercury removal from wastewater. IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, 230 (1). 012044. ISSN 1757-899X

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    Coal fly ash (CFA) derived synthetic zeolites have become popular with recent advances and its ever-expanding range of applications, particularly as an adsorbent for water and gas purification and as a binder or additive in the construction industry and agriculture. Among these applications, perpetual interest has been in utilization of CFA derived synthetic zeolites for removal of heavy metals from wastewater. We herein focus on utilization of locally available CFA for efficient adsorption of mercury from wastewater. To this end, experimental conditions were investigated so that to produce synthetic zeolites from Kazakhstani CFAs with conversion into zeolite up to 78%, which has remarkably high magnetite content. In particular, the effect of synthesis reaction temperature, reaction time, and loading of adsorbent were systematically investigated and optimized. All produced synthetic zeolites and the respective CFAs were characterized using XRD, XRF, PSA and porosimetric instruments to obtain microstructural and mineralogical data. Furthermore, the synthesized zeolites were studied for the removal of mercury from aqueous solutions. A comparison of removal eficiency and its relationship to the physical and chemical properties of the synthetic zeolites were analyzed and interpreted.