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Special Issue "Heavy Metals Removal from Contaminated Soil and Water"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Green Chemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2019

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Encarnación Ruiz Ramos

Universidad de Jaen, Spain
Website | E-Mail
Interests: biorefinery; lignocellulosic biomass; bioethanol; biosorption of heavy metals
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Francisco Espínola

Universidad de Jaen, Spain
Website | E-Mail
Interests: wastewaters; bioremediation of heavy metals; fixed-bed column; kinetics; isotherm; mechanism studies; adsorption–desorption; virgin olive oil; antioxidants; vitamins; volatile compounds

Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

Heavy metal pollution of natural soil and water is one of the most important environmental problems today. Soil and water can be considered scarce and vital resources for ecosystems as a whole. In addition, the possibility of bioaccumulation of heavy metals in living organisms can cause a biomagnification of the effects of these harmful contaminants, affecting the trophic chain, which has given rise to multiple efforts to find effective technologies to solve the problem.

The aim of this Special Issue is to report recent promising research on current practices, advances, and new perspectives on the removal of heavy metals from contaminated waters and soils, considering (i) physicochemical technologies; (ii) thermochemical technologies; and (iii) bioremediation. In addition to environmental decontamination, the recovery of valuable metals will also be discussed. For example, the ability of some microorganisms to produce metal nanoparticles could be of great interest, due to their applications in biomedicine or biotechnology.

Prof. Dr. Encarnación Ruiz Ramos
Prof. Dr. Francisco Espínola
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Removal and recovery of heavy metals
  • Physicochemical technologies
  • Thermochemical technologies
  • Bioremediation
  • Biosorption
  • Phytoremediation
  • Kinetic, equilibrium, and mechanism studies
  • Metal nanoparticles

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Application of Response Surface Methodology and Desirability Function in the Optimization of Adsorptive Remediation of Arsenic from Acid Mine Drainage Using Magnetic Nanocomposite: Equilibrium Studies and Application to Real Samples
Molecules 2019, 24(9), 1792; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules24091792
Received: 14 April 2019 / Revised: 2 May 2019 / Accepted: 4 May 2019 / Published: 9 May 2019
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Abstract
A magnetic multi-walled carbon nanotube/zeolite nanocomposite was applied for the adsorption and removal of arsenic ions in simulated and real acid mine drainage samples. The adsorption mechanism was investigated using two-parameter (Langmuir, Freundlich, Temkin) and three-parameter (Redlich–Peterson, and Sips) isotherm models. This was [...] Read more.
A magnetic multi-walled carbon nanotube/zeolite nanocomposite was applied for the adsorption and removal of arsenic ions in simulated and real acid mine drainage samples. The adsorption mechanism was investigated using two-parameter (Langmuir, Freundlich, Temkin) and three-parameter (Redlich–Peterson, and Sips) isotherm models. This was done in order to determine the characteristic parameters of the adsorptive removal process. The results showed that the removal process was described by both mono- and multilayer adsorptions. Adsorption studies demonstrated that a multi-walled carbon nanotube/zeolite nanocomposite could efficiently remove arsenic in simulated samples within 35 min. Based on the Langmuir isotherm, the adsorption capacity for arsenic was found to be 28 mg g−1. The nanocomposite was easily separated from the sample solution using an external magnet and the regeneration was achieved by washing the adsorbent with 0.05 mol L−1 hydrochloric acid solution. Moreover, the nanoadsorbent was reusable for at least 10 cycles of adsorption-desorption with no significant decrease in the adsorption capacity. The nanoadsorbent was also used for the arsenic removal from acid mine drainage. Overall, the adsorbent displayed excellent reusability and stability; thus, they are promising nanoadsorbents for the removal of arsenic from acid mine drainage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Heavy Metals Removal from Contaminated Soil and Water)
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Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle
Recovery of Rare Earth Elements from Wastewater Towards a Circular Economy
Molecules 2019, 24(6), 1005; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules24061005
Received: 14 February 2019 / Revised: 4 March 2019 / Accepted: 6 March 2019 / Published: 13 March 2019
PDF Full-text (7726 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The use of rare earth elements is a growing trend in diverse industrial activities, leading to the need for eco-friendly approaches to their efficient recovery and reuse. The aim of this work is the development of an environmentally friendly and competitive technology for [...] Read more.
The use of rare earth elements is a growing trend in diverse industrial activities, leading to the need for eco-friendly approaches to their efficient recovery and reuse. The aim of this work is the development of an environmentally friendly and competitive technology for the recovery of those elements from wastewater. Kinetic and equilibria batch assays were performed with zeolite, with and without bacterial biofilm, to entrap rare earth ions from aqueous solution. Continuous assays were also performed in column setups. Over 90% removal of lanthanum and cerium was achieved using zeolite as sorbent, with and without biofilm, decreasing to 70% and 80%, respectively, when suspended Bacillus cereus was used. Desorption from the zeolite reached over 60%, regardless of the tested conditions. When in continuous flow in columns, the removal yield was similar for all of the rare earth elements tested. Lanthanum and cerium were the elements most easily removed by all tested sorbents when tested in single- or multi-solute solutions, in batch and column assays. Rare earth removal from wastewater in open setups is possible, as well as their recovery by desorption processes, allowing a continuous mode of operation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Heavy Metals Removal from Contaminated Soil and Water)
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Open AccessArticle
The Removal of CuO Nanoparticles from Water by Conventional Treatment C/F/S: The Effect of pH and Natural Organic Matter
Molecules 2019, 24(5), 914; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules24050914
Received: 8 February 2019 / Revised: 27 February 2019 / Accepted: 28 February 2019 / Published: 5 March 2019
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (2411 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
The increased use of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs), such as copper oxide nanoparticles (CuO NPs), in commercial products and applications raises concern regarding their possible release into freshwater sources. Therefore, their removal from water is important to eliminate adverse environmental and human health effects. [...] Read more.
The increased use of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs), such as copper oxide nanoparticles (CuO NPs), in commercial products and applications raises concern regarding their possible release into freshwater sources. Therefore, their removal from water is important to eliminate adverse environmental and human health effects. In this study, the effects of pH and natural organic matter (NOM), i.e., humic acid (HA) and salicylic acid (SA) on the removal of CuO NPs by coagulation/flocculation/sedimentation (C/F/S) were evaluated. The results indicated that pH significantly affects the coagulation efficiency, where 10–60% CuO NPs removal was achieved under extreme acidic/alkaline conditions. However, at neutral pH, removal of up to 90% was observed with a lower ferric chloride (FC) dosage (0.2 mM). The coagulation efficiency and mechanism were strongly affected by the type of Fe species present in the aqueous phase, which is mainly controlled by pH. Higher concentrations of both HA and SA decrease the CuO NPs agglomeration rate, and thereby improve the colloidal stability due to the NOM molecules adsorbed onto the NPs surface. The presence of hydrophobic HA needs a higher FC dosage of 0.5–0.8 mM than a dosage of hydrophilic SA of 0.25–0.35 mM, to obtain a similar CuO coagulation efficiency. Moreover, higher removals of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and UV254 were observed more in hydrophobic NOM than in hydrophilic. The results of the Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) analysis of FC composite flocs confirm that the charge neutralization and enmeshment of coagulant might be a possible removal mechanism. The findings of the current study may provide critical information in the prediction of the fate, mobility, and removal of CuO NPs during C/F/S in water treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Heavy Metals Removal from Contaminated Soil and Water)
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