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Open AccessReview

Sorption of Organic Pollutants by Humic Acids: A Review

1
Department of Engineering, University of Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, Via Roma 29, 81031 Aversa (CE), Italy
2
Environmental Technologies, University Spin Off of University of Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, Via Vivaldi, 43, 81100 Caserta, Italy
3
Department of Environmental, Biological and Pharmaceutical Sciences and Technologies, University of Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”, via Vivaldi 43, 81100 Caserta, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Molecules 2020, 25(4), 918; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules25040918
Received: 25 January 2020 / Revised: 12 February 2020 / Accepted: 18 February 2020 / Published: 19 February 2020
Humic acids (HA) are promising green materials for water and wastewater treatment. They show a strong ability to sorb cationic and hydrophobic organic pollutants. Cationic compounds interact mainly by electrostatic interaction with the deprotonated carboxylic groups of HA. Other functional groups of HA such as quinones, may form covalent bonds with aromatic ammines or similar organic compounds. Computational and experimental works show that the interaction of HA with hydrophobic organics is mainly due to π–π interactions, hydrophobic effect and hydrogen bonding. Several works report that sorbing efficiency is related to the hydrophobicity of the sorbate. Papers about the interaction between organic pollutants and humic acids dissolved in solution, in the solid state and adsorbed onto solid particles, like aluminosilicates and magnetic materials, are reviewed and discussed. A short discussion of the thermodynamics and kinetics of the sorption process, with indication of the main mistakes reported in literature, is also given. View Full-Text
Keywords: humic acids; sorption; organic pollutants; sorption isotherm; kinetic modelling humic acids; sorption; organic pollutants; sorption isotherm; kinetic modelling
MDPI and ACS Style

Chianese, S.; Fenti, A.; Iovino, P.; Musmarra, D.; Salvestrini, S. Sorption of Organic Pollutants by Humic Acids: A Review. Molecules 2020, 25, 918.

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