Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Faculty Research


The Role of Soil Properties in Pyrene Sorption and Desorption

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2003


Soil type will greatly affect the sorption and subsequent desorptionof hydrophobic contaminants. To gain a better understanding of theimpact of soil type on sorptive behavior, the sorption-desorption of pyrene (PYR) with three different soils was studied. The first soil originated from Colombia and is classified as silty sand with3.54% soil organic matter (SOM) and 18% clay materials (<2 microns). The New Mexico soil is a sandy lean clay comprisedof 8.4% SOM and 10% clay. The last soil originated fromOhio and is a silty sand with 1.84% SOM and 9.6% clay. Based on soil mineralogy and sorption-desorption isotherms,the Colombia soil had the greatest binding potential followedby the New Mexico and Ohio soils. The Freundlich model couldfit both the Colombia and New Mexico soils. For the Ohiosoil, a two-stage Freundlich model was required. For allthree soils, PYR desorption was slow and resistant, anddepicted an apparent hysteresis. The extent of sorption-desorption for each soil was attributed to its individual classification.For instance, the SOM present in the New Mexico soil (8.4%) enabled a relatively easy desorption in comparison to the other two soils. For the Ohio and Colombia soils, the interaction with the clay fractions rendered a stronger sorptive bond.





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