Effect of pH conditions on actual and apparent fluoride adsorption by biochar in aqueous phase

Taek Keun Oh, Bongsu Choi, Yoshiyuki Shinogi, Jiro Chikushi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

73 Citations (Scopus)


Biochar is a carbon-rich product derived from biomass through pyrolysis. Fluoride adsorption potential of the biochar derived from orange peel (OP) and water treatment sludge (WS) at different pyrolytic temperatures (400, 600, and 700 °C) was investigated in a batch mode as a function of pH. With respect to adsorption, two types were considered, i.e., actual and apparent adsorption where fluoride combined with metal complexes in solution were counted and not counted, respectively. The highest actual fluoride adsorption was observed in the pH range of 2.0 to 3.9 for OP biochar and 5.1 to 6.2 for WS biochar, respectively. For the WS biochar, apparent fluoride adsorption showed nearly 100 % in the pH range of 2.0 to 4.5, and then the adsorption capacity diminished drastically as the pH increased from 5.0 to 10.0. There was no significant difference between apparent and actual fluoride adsorption for OP biochar. In the Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopic analysis of WS biochar, a strong and sharp band was observed at around 2,364 cm -1 after adsorption of fluoride. Elemental content analysis by the energy-dispersive X-ray method revealed that the fluorine content was higher at pH 6.0 than at pH 3.0 and 9.0 as the results of actual fluoride adsorption. From these results, we may conclude that the biochar derived from OP and WS can be reused as an economical and effective adsorbent for fluoride removal in acidic aqueous phase.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3729-3738
Number of pages10
JournalWater, Air, and Soil Pollution
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Ecological Modelling
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Pollution


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