This study produced a biosorbent called HeveaMET obtained from rubber leaf powder, chemically modified with NaOH, to remove Cu(II) and Ni(II) ions from wastewater.
The presence of heavy metals in the environment is of major concern because of their toxicity, bioaccumulation, and threat to human life and environment. The removal of heavy metals from our environment especially wastewater, is shifted from using electrolysis, chemical precipitation, electroflotation, oxidation-reduction, solvent extraction and ion-exchange to the use of biosorbents.
In recent years, many low cost biosorbents obtained from lignocellulosic agricultural by-products have been investigated for their biosorption capacity towards heavy metals. Agricultural wastes are now becoming viable alternatives since they are abundantly available, much cheaper and have various functional groups such as carboxylic acid, ester, carboxylate, hydroxyl, phenolic and amino that can act as adsorption sites for heavy metal ions.
In Malaysia, more than 1.2 million ha of lands are planted with rubber trees and every year, mature rubber leaves (brownish in color) will fall to the ground during the dry season (January to March) producing a huge amount of solid waste. The conversion of this type of plant waste into a low cost heavy metal biosorbent offers a cost effective and green alternative to existing technologies to treat metal laden wastewater.
In this work, the data obtained from column experiment indicated that 10 g of HeveaMET was able to remove 7.1 and 11.1 L of Cu(II) and Ni(II) ions at 10 mg/L concentration, respectively. HeveaMET was able to be regenerated using 0.1 M HCl or HNO3 and reused for three cycles. The main mechanisms involved in heavy metals removal were ion-exchange, complexation and physical adsorption. Due to the high volumes of Cu(II) and Ni(II) that could be treated and the low cost of production (~ RM5/kg), HeveMET ha.Reported by Megawati Omar
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Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
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A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
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Researchers from the University of Miami (UM) Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, the Italian Space Agency (ASI), and the Instituto Geofisico--Escuela Politecnica Nacional (IGEPN) of Ecuador, showed an increasing volcanic danger on Cotopaxi in Ecuador using a powerful technique known as Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR).
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