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Adsorption of selected heavy metals on modified nano cellulose

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cellulose nanofibrils, crystallinity, adsorption, heavy metals

Abstract (summary)

Cellulose is an inexpensive, renewable, bio-based and an abundant raw material suitable for the development of filter membranes for water purification. This is because it has numerous functional groups that afford ease of modification to create active surfaces upon chemical modification. In this study, cellulose was isolated from two abundant biomasses, namely, Eichhornia crassipes and Cyperus papyrus using the soda process followed by bleaching with peracetic acid. The percent yield of cellulose nanofibrils (CNF) obtained from E. crassipes and C. papyrus was found to be 31.64 ± 1.46% and 29.55 ± 0.64% respectively. The degree of crystallinity and crystal sizes were calculated to be 71.42% and 0.059 nm for E. crassipes and 46.15% and 0.068 nm for C. papyrus respectively. The FT-IR absorption of the carbonyl functional group of an ester indicated that effective esterification of cellulose using citric acid was obtained when cellulose nanofibrils to citric acid ratio was 1:1. From batch adsorption studies, the capacity for citric acid modified cellulose to remove heavy metals was determined to be 8.36 mg/g Zn2+, 18.06 mg/g Cu2+, 42.69 mg/g Cd2+ and 21.64 mg/g Pb2+. In comparison to the % adsorption using unmodified cellulose of less than 5%, the heavy metals adsorption using modified nanocellulose materials were 86.47% Pb2+, 85.20% Cd2+, 77.40% Cu2+, and 70.04% Zn2+. From these results, it was concluded that modified cellulose could be used as a low cost adsorbent for removal of heavy metals and that development of household water filtration units using modified cellulose could be exploited.

Publication Information

Madivoli, E. S., Kareru, P. G., Gachanja, A. N., Mugo, S. M., Murigi, M. K., Kairigo, P. K., Kipyegon, C., Mutembei, J. K., & Njonge, F.K. Adsorption of selected heavy metals on modified nano cellulose. International Research Journal of Pure & Applied Chemistry, 12(3), 1-9, 2016. doi: 10.9734/IRJPAC/2016/28548


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