Competitive Adsorption of Xylene and Toluene on Modified and Unmodified Magnesium Exchanged Bentonite Clay Mineral
Cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) – modified and unmodified magnesium exchanged bentonite were used for the competitive adsorption of m-xylene and toluene from their aqueous solution. Infrared spectroscopy (IR, adsorption capacity and Foster swelling measurements were performed using Fourier Transform Infrared Spectrophotometer to evaluate the performance of the adsorbents. The FT-IR results indicated that the quaternary ammonium salts (Cetyltrimethylammonium bromide) were intercalated between the layers of the bentonite clay. The Foster swelling test results indicated that the affinity of CTAB occurred in the treated clay as tested in all organic solvents (diesel, kerosene, gasoline, toluene and m-xylene), with and without agitation. The result showed that modified magnesium bentonite swelled more than the unmodified and the order of the swelling factor is; m- xylene > toluene > gasoline > diesel > DPK > water. However, when the assay was performed under agitation, it yielded higher swelling capacity and all the organic solvents used in this investigation showed good compatibility after organophilization. The modified clay exhibited very high capacity of adsorption compared to unmodified samples. The m-xylene and toluene uptake follows a pseudo second order kinetics mechanism, suggesting that the rate determining step of adsorption involves the two adsorbates competitively adsorbed on the adsorbent sites. Modified magnesium bentonite has a higher percentage removal and higher adsorption capacity than raw or unmodified magnesium bentonite. These adsorbents (modified magnesium bentonite) are therefore recommended for use by water treatment and petrochemical industries for removal of hydrocarbons (m- xylene and toluene) from their waste water and effluents.