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2.

0 HAZARDOUS
WASTE RECOVERY
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSORPTION
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Definition
• Sorption refers to the action of absorption or
adsorption:
• Absorption is the incorporation of a substance in
one state into another of a different state (e.g.,
liquids being absorbed by a solid or gases being
absorbed by a liquid).
• Adsorption is the physical adherence or bonding
of ions and molecules onto the surface of
another phase (e.g., reagents adsorbed to solid
catalyst surface).
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Definition
• Activated Carbon", also called activated
charcoal or activated coal is a form of carbon
that has been processed to make it extremely
porous and thus to have a very large surface
area available for adsorption or chemical
reactions.
• Activated carbon is carbon produced from
carbonaceous source materials like nutshells,
peat, wood, coir, lignite, coal and petroleum
pitch.
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Definition
• The word activated in the name is sometimes
replaced with active. Due to its high degree of
microporosity, just 1 gram of activated carbon
has a surface area in excess of 500 m2 (about
one tenth the size of a football field), as
determined typically by nitrogen gas adsorption.
Sufficient activation for useful applications may
come solely from the high surface area, though
further chemical treatment often enhances the
absorbing properties of the material. Activated
carbon is usually derived from charcoal.
Particles movement inside the pore
Particle movement
ACTIVATED CARBON ADSOPTION
ACTIVATED CARBON ADSOPTION
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Mechanisms
• Activated Carbon uses the physical
adsorption process whereby attractive van
der Waals forces pull the solute out of
solution and onto its surface. Once the
solute is bound to the carbon it is
considered "removed" from the water. The
animation below illustrates this process
where the organics are drawn toward the
activated carbon by these forces.
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Mechanisms
Activated carbon adsorption proceeds
through 3 basic :
• Substances adsorb to the exterior of the
carbon granules
• Substances move into the carbon pores
• Substances adsorb to the interior walls of
the carbon
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Mechanisms
• Variety of attractive forces exists between
fluid phrase (gas or liquid) molecules and
the molecules of a solid adsorbent, all
having their origin in the electromagnetic
interactions of nucleus and electrons.
• Three loosely defined categories have
been distinguished : physical, chemical
and electrostatic interactions.
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Mechanisms
• Physical adsorption result from the
action of van der Waals forces, relatively
weak interactions produced by the motion
of electrons in their orbitals.
• Chemical adsorption, or chemisorption,
involves electronic interaction between
specific surface sites and adsorbate
molecules, resulting in the formation of a
bond that can have all the characteristics
of a true chemical bond.
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Mechanisms
• Both chemical and physical adsorption
result from electrostatic interaction, the
term electrostatic adsorption is generally
reserved for Coulombic attractive forces
between ions and charged functional
group and is synonymous with the term
ion exchange.
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Mechanisms
• Similar to surface tension, adsorption is a
consequence of surface energy. In a bulk
material, all the bonding requirements (be
they ionic, covalent, or metallic) of the
constituent atoms of the material are filled
by other atoms in the material.
• However, atoms on the surface of the
adsorbent are not wholly surrounded by
other adsorbent atoms and therefore can
attract adsorbates.
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Mechanisms
• The exact nature of the bonding depends
on the details of the species involved, but
the adsorption process is generally
classified as physisorption (characteristic
of weak van der Waals forces) or
chemisorption (characteristic of covalent
bonding). It may also occur due to
electrostatic attraction
Reactor configurations for adsorption systems
Basic schematic diagram for AC reactor
Siries type reactors
Siries of carbon reactor application
Activated carbon demand
Applications of activated carbon
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Applications
• Activated carbon is used in gas
purification, gold purification, metal
extraction, water purification, medicine,
sewage treatment, air filters in gas masks
and respirators, filters in compressed air
and many other applications.
• Activated carbon is usually used in water
filtration systems. In this illustration, the
activated carbon is in the fourth level
(counted from bottom).
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Applications
• Carbon adsorption has numerous
applications in removing pollutants from air
or water streams both in the field and in
industrial processes such as:
• Spill cleanup
• Groundwater remediation
• Drinking water filtration
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Applications
• Air purification
• Volatile organic compounds capture from
painting, dry cleaning, gasoline dispensing
operations, and other processes.
• Activated carbon, often impregnated with
iodine or sulfur, is widely used to trap
mercury emissions from coal-fired power
stations, medical incinerators, and from
natural gas (methane, ethane) at the
wellhead.
Carbon particles size :
PAC- Powdered activated carbon
GAC – Granular activated carbon
EAC – Extruded activated carbon

EAC

GAC

PAC
Application by types of AC
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Type
Powdered Activated Carbon (PAC)
• for removal of tastes, odours and toxins in
water
• for removal of impurities in sugar
(decolourising)
• pulverized carbon with a size
predominantly less than 0.18mm
• These are mainly used in liquid phase
applications and for flue gas treatment.
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Type
Granular Activated Carbon (GAC)
• biological activated carbon (BAC) for water
treatment
• coconut based carbon for gold extraction
• high purity carbons for the aquatic and beverage
industries
• air treatment
• site remediation - irregular shaped particles with
sizes ranging from 0.2 to 5 mm
• This type is used in both liquid and gas phase
applications
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Type
Pelletised/ Extruded Activated Carbon
(EAC)
• for sewerage odour control
• extruded and cylindrical shaped with
diameters from 0.8 to 5 mm
• These are mainly used for gas phase
applications because of their low pressure
drop, high mechanical strength and low
dust content.
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Type
Impregnated carbon
• Porous carbons containing several types of
inorganic impregnant such as iodine, silver,
cations
• air pollution control especially in museums and
galleries.
• Impregnated carbons are also used for the
adsorption of H2S and thiols.
• Adsorption rates for H2S as high as 50% by
weight
ACTIVATED CARBON
ADSOPTION - Type
Polymer coated carbon
• This is a process by which a porous carbon can
be coated with a biocompatible polymer to give
a smooth and permeable coat without blocking
the pores.
• The resulting carbon is useful for
hemoperfusion. Hemoperfusion is a treatment
technique in which large volumes of the patient's
blood are passed over an adsorbent substance
in order to remove toxic substances from the
blood.
Types of AC applications