Removal of organic pollutants in model water and thermal wastewater using clay minerals

Emese Szabó, Krisztina Vajda, Gábor Veréb, András Dombi, Károly Mogyorósi, Imre Ábrahám, Marcell Májer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)


Water treatment method was developed for the removal of different anionic dyes such as methyl orange and indigo carmine, and also for thymol applying sodium bentonite and cationic surfactant -hexadecyltrimethylammonium bromide (HTAB) -or polyelectrolytes (polydiallyldimethylammonium chloride, poly-DADMAC and poly-amines). The removal efficiency of these model substrates was examined in model water using UV-Vis spectrophotometry, HPLC and TOC analysis. The clay mineral and HTAB were added in one step to the polluted model water in Jar-test experiments. The influence of the cation exchange capacity (CEC) of the applied clay mineral and the presence of polyaluminium chloride coagulant (BOPAC) were also tested for the water treatment process. The structures of the in situ produced and pre-prepared organoclay composites were compared by XRD analysis. The rapid formation of organoclay adsorbents provided very efficient removal of the dyes (65-90 % in 3-10 mg/L TOC0 range) with 200 mg/L sodium bentonite dose, however thymol was less efficiently separated. Adsorption efficiencies of the composites were compared at different levels of ion exchange such as at 40, 60 and 100 %. In the case of thymol, the elimination of inorganic carbon from the model water before the TOC analysis resulted in some loss of the analysed volatile compound therefore the HPLC analysis was found to be the most suitable tool for the evaluation of the process. This one-step adsorption method using in situ formed organoclay was better performing than the conventional process in which the montmorillonite-surfactant composite is pre-preapared and subsequently added to the polluted water. The purification performance of this method was also evaluated on raw and artificially polluted thermal wastewater samples containing added thymol.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1346-1356
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Environmental Science and Health - Part A Toxic/Hazardous Substances and Environmental Engineering
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2011


  • Wastewater purification
  • adsorption
  • cationic polyelectrolytes
  • montmorillonite
  • organic pollutants
  • organoclay
  • thermal water

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering

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