Entrapment of iron nanoparticles in calcium alginate beads for groundwater remediation applications.J Hazard Mater. 2009 Jul 30; 166(2-3):1339-43.JH
Zero-valent iron nanoparticles (nZVI) have been successfully entrapped in biopolymer, calcium (Ca)-alginate beads. The study has demonstrated the potential use of this technique in environmental remediation using nitrate as a model contaminant. Ca-alginate beads show promise as an entrapment medium for nZVI for possible use in groundwater remediation. Based on scanning electron microscopy images it can be inferred that the alginate gel cluster acts as a bridge that binds the nZVI particles together. Kinetic experiments with 100, 60, and 20mg NO(3)(-)-NL(-1) indicate that 50-73% nitrate-N removal was achieved with entrapped nZVI as compared to 55-73% with bare nZVI over a 2-h period. The controls ran simultaneously show little NO(3)(-)-N removal. Statistical analysis indicates that there was no significant difference between the reaction rates of bare and entrapped nZVI. The authors have shown for the first time that nZVI can be effectively entrapped in Ca-alginate beads and no significant decrease in the reactivity of nZVI toward the model contaminant (nitrate here) was observed after the entrapment.