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Sustainability 2017, 9(1), 102; doi:10.3390/su9010102

Fast Removal of Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers from Aqueous Solutions by Using Low-Cost Adsorbents

1
Institute of Biotechnology and Chemical Engineering, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung 84001, Taiwan
2
Department of Recreation Sports Management, Tajen University, Pingtung 90741, Taiwan
3
Department of Emergency Medicine, Kaohsiung Veterans General Hospital, Kaohsiung 81362, Taiwan
4
Department of Soil and Water Conservation, National Pingtung University of Science and Technology, Pingtung 91201, Taiwan
5
Department of Civil and Ecological Engineering, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung 84001, Taiwan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Vincenzo Torretta
Received: 31 August 2016 / Revised: 3 January 2017 / Accepted: 4 January 2017 / Published: 12 January 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Use of the Environment and Resources)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [3455 KB, uploaded 12 January 2017]   |  

Abstract

4-Dibromodiphenyl ether (BDE-3) and 4,4′-dibromodiphenyl ether (BDE-15) are two of the major polybrominated diphenyl ethers used as flame-retardant additives in computer main boards and in fireproof building materials. In this study, we evaluated the potential of three low-cost adsorbents, black tea, green tea, and coconut palm leaf powders, to adsorb BDE-3 and BDE-15 from aqueous solutions. The results showed that pressure steam washing of the adsorbents increased their capacities to adsorb BDE-3 and BDE-15. The maximum adsorption capacities of pressure steam–washed black tea, green tea, and coconut palm leaf powders were 21.85 mg·L−1, 14.56 mg·L−1 and 22.47 mg·L−1, respectively. The results also showed that the adsorption equilibrium (qe) was achieved at 4 min. Moreover, 97.8% of BDE-3 and 98.5% of BDE-15 could be removed by adsorbents pretreated with pressure steam washing. The kinetic data fitted well with a pseudo-second-order equation. The adsorption rate constants (k2) of all pressure steam–washed adsorbents ranged from 8.16 × 10−3 to 6.61 × 10−2 g·(mg·L−1)−1·s−1, and the amount adsorbed at qe by all pressure steam–washed adsorbents ranged from 4.21 to 4.78 mg·L−1. Green alga Chlorella vulgaris was used as the test organism and the median effective concentration values of BDE-3 and BDE-15 were 7.24 and 3.88 mg·L−1, respectively. After BDE-3 and BDE-15 were removed from the solution, their biotoxicities markedly decreased. These findings indicate that these low-cost adsorbents can be used to remove BDE-3 and BDE-15 from aqueous solutions and wastewater. View Full-Text
Keywords: polybrominated diphenyl ethers; adsorption; low-cost adsorbents; biotoxicity assays polybrominated diphenyl ethers; adsorption; low-cost adsorbents; biotoxicity assays
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Chang, R.; Jien, S.-H.; Weng, C.-H.; Lee, T.-W.; Liao, C.-S. Fast Removal of Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers from Aqueous Solutions by Using Low-Cost Adsorbents. Sustainability 2017, 9, 102.

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