Geochemical reconnaissance of heavy metals in kaolin after electrokinetic remedation



A. Z. Al-Hamdan;K. R. Reddy


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Abbreviated Journal Title

J. Environ. Sci. Health Part A-Toxic/Hazard. Subst. Environ. Eng.


electrokinetic remediation; kaolin; soils; heavy metals; MINEQL(+); contaminant speciation; REMOVAL; REMEDIATION; SOIL; ELECTROOSMOSIS; HYDROCARBONS; CHROMIUM; CADMIUM; FIELD; MODEL; CLAY; Engineering, Environmental; Environmental Sciences


The development or implementation of electrokinetic soil remediation technique requires a good knowledge of how the contaminants are retained within the soil-water system. This paper investigates the speciation and extent of migration of the heavy metals, Cr(VI), Cr(III), Ni(II), and Cd(II), during electrokinetic soil remediation. A geo-chemical assessment of how the contaminants are held within the kaolin soil under induced electric potential is made by using the equilibrium model MINEQL(+). The study is performed for three different contaminant cases: the Cr(VI) existing alone in the soil, the Cr(VI) combined with Ni(II) and Cd(II) in the soil, and the Cr(VI) combined with Ni(II) and Cd(II) in the soil in the presence of a reducing agent (sulfide). The adsorption of the studied metals by kaolin was implemented as an electrostatic behavior. FITEQL 4.0 model was used to determine the equilibrium constants of the electrostatic adsorption model of kaolin for the studied metals by optimizing the experimental titration and adsorption data of kaolin. This study showed that the initial speciation of the contaminants in the soil prior to the electrokinetic treatment depends on the type and amounts of contaminants present as well as on the presence of the co-contaminants or any reducing agent. Moreover, the extent of migration of the contaminants is strongly dependent on their initial speciation prior electrokinetic treatment. This study also showed that adsorption and precipitation are the significant hindering mechanisms for the removal of heavy metals from kaolin soil during electrokinetic treatment. The adsorption and precipitation forms of Cr(III), Ni(H), and Cd(II) increased near the cathode and decreased near the anode, whereas the adsorption form of Cr(VI) increased near the anode as well as in the middle region. However, the precipitation form of Cr(III), Ni(II), and Cd(II) as Cr2O3 or Cr(OH)(3), Ni(OH)(2), and Cd(OH)(2), respectively, dominates over their adsorption form as they get closer to the cathode. Overall this study demonstrates that the electrolysis reactions control contaminant speciation and distribution in the soil during electrokinetic remediation because of the generated variations in pH and redox potential in the soil as a result of these reactions.

Journal Title

Journal of Environmental Science and Health Part a-Toxic/Hazardous Substances & Environmental Engineering





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