The previously-obtained and characterized hybrid pectin-based beads containing agar-agar and guar gum, as well as sole pectin beads (P, for comparison) were examined for zinc ions sorption and desorption properties. The sorption kinetics and equilibrium in the studied system was described by two kinetic models (pseudo-first- and pseudo-second-order) and two isotherms (Langmuir and Freundlich), respectively. The desorption kinetics and equilibrium was also investigated by applying various inorganic acids (nitric, hydrochloric, and sulfuric acid) of various concentrations. In the case of guar gum additive, no significant change in sorption capacity compared to sole pectin beads was observed (q: 37.0 ± 2.6 and 34.7 ± 2.0 mg/g, respectively). Addition of agar-agar significantly decreased the sorption capacity to 22.3 ± 1.0 mg/g, but stripping of zinc(II) ions from this biosorbent was complete even with very diluted acids (0.01 M). Total desorption of zinc from sole pectin and pectin-guar gum beads required acid solution of higher concentration (0.1 M). Sorption rates for all biosorbents are roughly the same and maximum sorption is achieved after 4–5 h. Obtained results and the advantage of our sorbent’s shape formation ability, make the pectin-based biosorbents interesting alternative for zinc(II) ions removal.
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