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Open AccessArticle

Utilization of Non-Living Microalgae Biomass from Two Different Strains for the Adsorptive Removal of Diclofenac from Water

Department of Applied Chemistry and Physics, IMARENABIO-Institute of Environment, Natural Resources and Biodiversity, Campus de Vegazana s/n, Universidad de León, 24071 León, Spain
CALAGUA—Unidad Mixta UV-UPV, IIAMA-Research Institute of Water and Environmental Engineering, Camí de Vera s/n, Universitat Politècnica de València, 46022 València, Spain
CESAM-Centre for Environmental and Marine Studies, Department of Environment and Planning, Campus Universitário de Santiago, University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(10), 1401;
Received: 3 September 2018 / Revised: 28 September 2018 / Accepted: 6 October 2018 / Published: 9 October 2018
In the present work, the adsorptive removal of diclofenac from water by biosorption onto non-living microalgae biomass was assessed. Kinetic and equilibrium experiments were carried out using biomass of two different microalgae strains, namely Synechocystis sp. and Scenedesmus sp. Also, for comparison purposes, a commercial activated carbon was used under identical experimental conditions. The kinetics of the diclofenac adsorption fitted the pseudo-second order equation, and the corresponding kinetic constants indicating that adsorption was faster onto microalgae biomass than onto the activated carbon. Regarding the equilibrium results, which mostly fitted the Langmuir isotherm model, these pointed to significant differences between the adsorbent materials. The Langmuir maximum capacity (Qmax) of the activated carbon (232 mg∙g−1) was higher than that of Scenedesmus sp. (28 mg∙g−1) and of Synechocystis sp. (20 mg∙g−1). In any case, the Qmax values determined here were within the values published in the recent scientific literature on the utilization of different adsorbents for the removal of diclofenac from water. Still, Synechocystis sp. showed the largest KL fitted values, which points to the affinity of this strain for diclofenac at relative low equilibrium concentrations in solution. Overall, the results obtained point to the possible utilization of microalgae biomass waste in the treatment of water, namely for the adsorption of pharmaceuticals. View Full-Text
Keywords: emerging contaminants (ECs); sorption; wastewater treatment; bioremediation; algae emerging contaminants (ECs); sorption; wastewater treatment; bioremediation; algae
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MDPI and ACS Style

Coimbra, R.N.; Escapa, C.; Vázquez, N.C.; Noriega-Hevia, G.; Otero, M. Utilization of Non-Living Microalgae Biomass from Two Different Strains for the Adsorptive Removal of Diclofenac from Water. Water 2018, 10, 1401.

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