Influence of mesoporosity on the sorption of 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid onto alumina and silica

Keith W. Goyne, Jon Chorover, Andrew R. Zimmerman, Sridhar Komarneni, Susan L. Brantley

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Two SiO2 and three Al2O3 adsorbents with varying degrees of mesoporosity (pore diameter 2-50 nm) were reacted with 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid (2,4-D) at pH 6 to investigate the effects of intraparticle mesopores on adsorption/desorption. Anionic 2,4-D did not adsorb onto either SiO2 solid, presumably because of electrostatic repulsion, but it did adsorb onto positively charged Al2O 3 adsorbents, resulting in concave isotherms. The Al 2O3 adsorbent of highest mesoporosity consistently adsorbed more 2,4-D per unit surface area than did the nonporous and less mesoporous Al2O3 adsorbents over a range of initial 2,4-D solution concentrations (0.025-2.5 mM) and reaction times (30 min-55 d). Differences in adsorption efficiency were observed despite equivalent surface site densities on the three Al2O3 adsorbents. Hysteresis between the adsorption/desorption isotherms was not observed, indicating that adsorption is reversible. Attenuated total reflectance-Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy studies confirm that 2,4-D adsorption does not occur via ligand exchange, but rather via electrostatic interaction. The results indicate that adsorbent intraparticle mesopores can result in consistently greater 2,4-D adsorption, but the amount adsorbed is dependent upon surface charge and the presence of adsorbent mesoporosity. The data also suggest that when mineral pores are significantly larger than the adsorbate, they do not contribute to diffusion-limited adsorption/desorption hysteresis. Adsorbent transformations through time are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)10-20
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Colloid And Interface Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 1 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biomaterials
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry


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