Laws and mechanism of adsorption of cations by different ion-exchange forms of silica gel

Sandor Barany, Vladimir Strelko

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)


Using radioactive tracer method, the regularities of adsorption of over 30 mono-, di- and trivalent cations including transition metal and lanthanide ions on the H, Ca- and Al-forms of silica gel are established. It has been shown that the affinity of cations of the same charge to the silica gel surface depends both on the nature of the adsorbing ion and the nature of exchangeable cation on the surface. Adsorption of alkali earth metal ions on the Ca-form of silica gel increases with a decrease of their radius i.e. an inversion of the sequence of adsorption compared to H- or Al-form of this adsorbent or polymeric cation-exchange resins takes place. For lanthanide ions the sequence of adsorption is the same for all ion-exchange forms of the silica gel studied, namely, an increase of adsorption with a decrease of their crystallographic radius, i.e. from La 3+ to Lu 3+ takes place. The laws observed are explained by taking into account the fact that adsorption of cations by silica gel is determined by both electrostatic interactions and additional covalent/donor-acceptor interactions between the surface and cations. The latter is due to formation of π-bonds between the electron pair in surface oxygen and vacant p-, d- or f-orbital of adsorbing cations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)769-776
Number of pages8
Issue number2-4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 31 2013



  • Adsorption
  • H-, Ca-and Al-forms
  • Laws
  • Mechanism
  • Mono-, di- and trivalent cations
  • Radioactive tracers
  • Silica gel
  • Surface bonds

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Surfaces and Interfaces

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