Humic acid facilitates the transport of ARS-labeled hydroxyapatite nanoparticles in iron oxyhydroxide-coated sand

Environmental Science & Technology
By: , and 

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Abstract

Hydroxyapatite nanoparticles (nHAP) have been widely used to remediate soil and wastewater contaminated with metals and radionuclides. However, our understanding of nHAP transport and fate is limited in natural environments that exhibit significant variability in solid and solution chemistry. The transport and retention kinetics of Alizarin red S (ARS)-labeled nHAP were investigated in water-saturated packed columns that encompassed a range of humic acid concentrations (HA, 0–10 mg L–1), fractional surface coverage of iron oxyhydroxide coatings on sand grains (λ, 0–0.75), and pH (6.0–10.5). HA was found to have a marked effect on the electrokinetic properties of ARS-nHAP, and on the transport and retention of ARS-nHAP in granular media. The transport of ARS-nHAP was found to increase with increasing HA concentration because of enhanced colloidal stability and the reduced aggregate size. When HA = 10 mg L–1, greater ARS-nHAP attachment occurred with increasing λ because of increased electrostatic attraction between negatively charged nanoparticles and positively charged iron oxyhydroxides, although alkaline conditions (pH 8.0 and 10.5) reversed the surface charge of the iron oxyhydroxides and therefore decreased deposition. The retention profiles of ARS-nHAP exhibited a hyperexponential shape for all test conditions, suggesting some unfavorable attachment conditions. Retarded breakthrough curves occurred in sands with iron oxyhydroxide coatings because of time-dependent occupation of favorable deposition sites. Consideration of the above effects is necessary to improve remediation efficiency of nHAP for metals and actinides in soils and subsurface environments.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Humic acid facilitates the transport of ARS-labeled hydroxyapatite nanoparticles in iron oxyhydroxide-coated sand
Series title Environmental Science & Technology
DOI 10.1021/es203784u
Volume 46
Issue 5
Year Published 2012
Language English
Publisher ACS Publications
Contributing office(s) National Research Program - Central Branch
Description 8 p.
First page 2738
Last page 2745