Evaluation of the effectiveness and mechanisms of acetaminophen and methylene blue dye adsorption on activated biochar derived from municipal solid wastes. Academic Article uri icon


  • The adsorption potential and governing mechanisms of emerging contaminants, i.e. acetaminophen or acetyl-para-aminophenol (APAP) and methylene blue (MB) dye, on activated carbon derived from municipal solid waste were investigated in this work. Results showed that MB adsorption was significantly more effective, with a maximum removal of 99.9%, than APAP adsorption (%Rmax=63.7%). MB adsorption was found to be unaffected by pH change, while the adsorption capacity of APAP drastically dropped by about 89% when the pH was adjusted from pH 2 to 12. Surface reactions during APAP adsorption was dominated by both physical and chemical interactions, with the kinetic data showing good fit in both pseudo-first order (R2=0.986-0.997) and pseudo-second order (R2>0.998) models. On the other hand, MB adsorption was best described by the pseudo-second order model, with R2>0.981, denoting that chemisorption controlled the process. Electrostatic attractions and chemical reactions with oxygenated surface functional groups (i.e., -OH and -COOH) govern the adsorption of APAP and MB on the activated biochar. Thermodynamic study showed that APAP and MB adsorption were endothermic with positive H values of 16.5 and 74.7kJmol-1, respectively. Negative G values obtained for APAP (-3.7 to-5.1kJmol-1) and MB (-11.4 to-17.1kJmol-1) implied that the adsorption onto the activated biochar was spontaneous and feasible. Overall, the study demonstrates the effectiveness of activated biochar from municipal solid wastes as alternative adsorbent for the removal of acetaminophen and methylene blue dye from contaminated waters.

published proceedings

  • J Environ Manage

author list (cited authors)

  • Sumalinog, D., Capareda, S. C., & de Luna, M.

citation count

  • 73

complete list of authors

  • Sumalinog, Divine Angela G||Capareda, Sergio C||de Luna, Mark Daniel G

publication date

  • March 2018