Simultaneous removal of nitrate/phosphate with bimetallic nanoparticles of Fe coupled with copper or nickel supported on chelating resin.Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 2019; 26(16):16568-16576ES
Given the prevalence of nitrate and phosphate in surface and groundwater, it is important to develop technology for the simultaneous removal of nitrate and phosphate. In this study, we prepared the bimetallic nanoparticles of Fe coupled with copper or nickel supported on chelating resin DOW 3N (D-Fe/Ni and D-Fe/Cu) for removing nitrate and phosphate simultaneously. XPS profiles revealed that Cu has better ability than Ni to increase the stability of Fe nanoparticles and prevent nZVI from oxidation. The results showed that nitrate removal efficiencies by D-Fe/Ni and D-Fe/Cu were 98.7% and 95.5%, respectively and the phosphate removal efficiencies of D-Fe/Cu and D-Fe/Ni were 99.0% and 93.0%, respectively. Besides adsorption and coprecipitation as reported in previous studies, the mechanism of phosphate removal also includes the adsorption of the newly formed polymeric ligand exchanger (PLE). Moreover, in previous studies, the presence of phosphate had significant negative effects on the reduction of nitrate. However, in this study, the removal efficiency of nitrate was less affected with the increasing concentration of phosphate for D-Fe/Cu. This was mainly because D-Fe/Cu had higher adsorption capacity of phosphate due to the newly formed PLE according to the XPS depth profile analysis.