Competitive adsorption of dyes and heavy metals on zeolitic structures

J Environ Manage. 2013 Feb 15:116:213-21. doi: 10.1016/j.jenvman.2012.12.010. Epub 2013 Jan 12.


The adsorption of Acid blue 25, basic blue 9, basic violet 3, Pb(2+), Ni(2+), Zn(2+) and Cd(2+) ions has been studied in single and dye-metal binary solutions using two mineral materials: Clinoptilolite (CL) and ER (Erionite). These zeolites were characterized by FT-IR spectroscopy; potentiometric titration and nitrogen adsorption isotherms at 77 K to obtain their textural parameters. Results indicated that ER has an acidic character and a high specific surface (401 m(2) g(-1)) in contrast with the zeolite CL (21 m(2) g(-1)). Surprisingly, the removal of dyes was very similar for the two zeolites and they showed a considerable selectivity by the basic dyes in comparison with the acid dyes. In the case of heavy metals, ER was more effective in the adsorption process showing a selectivity of: Pb(2+) > Ni(2+) > Zn(2+) > Cd(2+). In the multicomponent adsorption experiments an antagonistic effect was observed in the removal of basic dyes and heavy metals. Particularly, the adsorbed amount of basic violet 3 decreased more significantly when the heavy metals are presents in contrast with the basic blue 9.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adsorption
  • Coloring Agents / chemistry*
  • Metals, Heavy / chemistry*
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical / chemistry
  • Zeolites / chemistry*


  • Coloring Agents
  • Metals, Heavy
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical
  • clinoptilolite
  • erionite
  • Zeolites