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Frontiers of Environmental Science & Engineering

Front. Environ. Sci. Eng.    2020, Vol. 14 Issue (4) : 70
Synthesis of vinasse-dolomite nanocomposite biochar via a novel developed functionalization method to recover phosphate as a potential fertilizer substitute
Nima Kamali1, Abdollah Rashidi Mehrabadi1(), Maryam Mirabi1, Mohammad Ali Zahed2
1. Civil, Water and Environmental Engineering Faculty, Shahid Beheshti University A.C., Tehran, Iran
2. Cell and Molecular Biology Department, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran
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• Nanocomposites were prepared by adding dolomite to vinasse at different ratio.

• Textural and morphological features of adsorbents were studied in detail.

• CCD based RSM was used for investigation of P ion removal by nanocomposite.

• The qm based on Langmuir model for modified vinasse biochar was 178.57 mg/g.

• P loaded nanocomposite improved plant growth and could be utilized as P-fertilizer.

The effectiveness of phosphate (P) removal from aqueous solutions was investigated by novel low-cost biochars synthesized from vinasse and functionalized with calcined dolomite. The vinasse-derived biochar, synthesized via pyrolysis at different temperatures, showed easy preparation and a large surface area. The novel vinasse biochar nanocomposites were prepared by adding dolomite to the vinasse biochars with different weight percentages (10, 20 and 30%). The characteristics of the prepared materials were identified for further understanding of the inherent adsorption mechanism between P ions and vinasse biochars. Vinasse-dolomite nanocomposite was very effective in the adsorption of P species from aqueous media. The effect of the operational factors on Vinasse-dolomite nanocomposite was explored by applying response surface methodology (RSM). According to RSM results, the optimum condition was achieved to be contact time 90 (min), 250 (mg/L) of P concentration and pH 7. Thermodynamic isotherm and kinetic studies were applied on experimental data to understand the adsorption behavior. The Vinasse-dolomite nanocomposite revealed preferential P species adsorption in the presence of co-existing anions. The P species could be recovered by 1.0 M HCl where the efficiency was not affected up to the fifth cycle. The P-loaded Vinasse-dolomite nanocomposite was successfully tested on a plant; it significantly improved its growth and proved its potency as a P-based fertilizer substitute.

Keywords Biochar      Vinasse      Dolomite      Phosphate      Fertilizer     
Corresponding Author(s): Abdollah Rashidi Mehrabadi   
Issue Date: 27 April 2020
 Cite this article:   
Nima Kamali,Abdollah Rashidi Mehrabadi,Maryam Mirabi, et al. Synthesis of vinasse-dolomite nanocomposite biochar via a novel developed functionalization method to recover phosphate as a potential fertilizer substitute[J]. Front. Environ. Sci. Eng., 2020, 14(4): 70.
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Nima Kamali
Abdollah Rashidi Mehrabadi
Maryam Mirabi
Mohammad Ali Zahed
Fig.1  (a) XRD patterns and (b) FT-IR spectra of the prepared VB samples.
Fig.2  SEM images and EDX spectra of prepared VB samples.
Adsorbents SiO2(%) Al2O3(%) Fe2O3(%) CaO(%) Na2O(%) MgO(%) K2O(%) TiO2(%) MnO(%) P2O5(%) LOI(%) Cl(%) SO3(%)
VB400 N N 0.17 7.03 6.47 2.96 25.16 0.029 0.031 0.018 47.04 4.15 6.74
VB600 N N 0.18 9.32 6.33 5.11 24.03 0.033 0.025 0.023 44.3 4.04 6.25
VB800 N N 0.16 17.85 5.54 8.89 18.91 0.03 0.033 0.017 39.2 4 5
VB800@D-10 N N 0.348 23.02 3.11 15.22 17.87 0.018 0.023 0.011 36.11 3 0.5
VB800@D-20 N N 0.011 27.08 1.95 18.22 17.04 0.017 0.011 0.008 30.77 3.4 1.1
VB800@D-30 N N 0.014 30.79 1.05 22.56 16.134 0.022 0.027 0.002 25.34 2.8 0.9
VB800@D-20/P N 0.06 0.289 26.264 1.151 19.13 17.58 0.019 0.021 9.577 25.74 N N
Tab.1  Elemental composition of the prepared VB samples
Adsorbents S BET(m2/g) V total(cm3/g) Average pore size(nm)
VB400 61.3 0.07 1.1
VB600 84.69 0.15 1.25
VB800 128.21 0.32 1.65
VB800@D-10 119.11 0.28 1.45
VB800@D-20 107.45 0.25 1.32
VB800@D-30 85.27 0.22 1.16
Tab.2  Textural parameters of the prepared VB samples employed in this study
Fig.3  Isotherm study for P ion adsorption on the prepared VB samples (reaction time= 90 min, applied VBs= 500 mg/L, pH= 7).
Fig.4  Combined effects of (a) P concentration and pH and (b) reaction time and pH on the equilibrium capacity of adsorption.
Adsorbents qm (mg/g) References
Mg-enriched tomato tissues 116.60 Yao et al. (2013)
Ca–Mg loaded biochar 326.62 Fang et al. (2015)
MgO-impregnated magnetic biochar 121.25 Li et al. (2016b)
CaO-MgO Carbon hybrid composite 207.79 Li et al. (2018a)
Mg/Al-LDHs biochar 81.83 Li et al. 2016a)
biochar calcium-alginate beads 214.20 Jung et al. (2017)
La2O3 grafted oak biochar 142.70 Wang et al. (2015)
Laminaria japonica-derived biochar 132.39 Jung et al. (2016)
Laminaria japonica-derived biochar (LB)-calcium alginate beads 126.71 Jung et al. (2016)
Magnesium hydroxide modified Diatomite 45.70 Mitrogiannis et al. (2017)
Calcium-rich biochar 147.05 Antunes et al. (2018)
Calcium decorated sludge carbon 116.82 Kong et al. (2018)
Mg oak biochar (in situ) 64.60 Takaya et al. (2016b)
Mg GHW biochar (in situ) 65.10 Takaya et al. (2016b)
Fe–Mn binary oxide 36.00 Rodrigues and da Silva (2010)
VB800@D-20 178.57 This study
Tab.3  P uptakes onto various adsorbents.
Model Parameter Unit Value
Pseudo-first-order K1 L/min 0.0376
qe mg/g 136.03
R2 0.9821
Pseudo-second-order K2 g/mg/min 0.00015
qe mg/g 166.66
R2 0.9994
Elovich β 0.0254
α 1.146
R2 0.9987
Intra-particle diffusion Kint g/mg/min0.5 0.0751
R2 0.9923
Particle diffusion Kp min–1 0.0376
R2 0.9821
Thermodynamic parameters T K 298 323 348
qe mg/g 118 106 99
ΔG kJ/mol –20.03 –21.39 –22.75
ΔH kJ/mol –3.86
ΔS kJ/mol/K 0.0542
R2 0.9992
Tab.4  Adsorption kinetic and thermodynamic parameters for P adsorption on VB800@D-20.
Fig.5  VB800@D-20/P release test in DI (a) and effect on Setaria viridis (b).
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