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Effects of Surface Chemistry on Deposition Kinetics of Colloidal Hematite (α-Fe2O3) in Packed Beds of Silica Sand


Noelte, Jeff Lee (2002) Effects of Surface Chemistry on Deposition Kinetics of Colloidal Hematite (α-Fe2O3) in Packed Beds of Silica Sand. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/KSZB-2238.


The removal of colloidal (sub-micrometer) particles from flowing suspensions by deposition on surfaces is important in many natural and industrial processes (e.g., the fate of colloids and associated pollutants in groundwater systems and water treatment involving separation processes). In deposition, colloidal particles are transported to the vicinity of the collector surface by advection and diffusion. Colloidal interactions at short distances determine whether a particle will attach to a collector. Deposition rates are reduced by the presence of repuls4e colloidal interactions. Van der Waals attraction and electric double layer repulsion are combined in DLVO theory to describe the total interaction energy between two surfaces. The total interaction energy depends on the solution chemistry and the electric charge and potential of the interacting surfaces. To understand the attachment step of particle deposition, an understanding of the role of simple chemical changes in the water altering the electrostatic interaction is critical. Deposition experiments using hematite particles and a silica sand were conducted to investigate the influence of specific adsorption to hematite on deposition kinetics. A variety of electrolytes, both inorganic and organic, were studied (e.g., phosphate, small organic acids, and polymeric organic compounds including fulvic and humic acid). Electrokinetic measurements were carried out, under chemical conditions similar to those in the deposition experiments, to provide information about the sign and magnitude of the surface charge on hematite particles. Experimental results show that the deposition rate is influenced primarily by electrostatic interactions, which are determined by the adsorption of potential detennining ions. In the absence of specifically adsorbed species, hematite deposition is transport limited (favorable deposition) at pH 6.5 and 1 millimolar NaCl. The addition of 100 micromolar total phosphate results in unfavorable deposition in which the deposition rate is reduced by approximately two orders of magnitude. Polymeric organic compounds produce unfavorable deposition at total concentrations around 10^(-5) g/L. It was observed that electrokinetic measurements in the presence of polymeric organic compounds are influenced by the particle concentration when hematite mobility is measured as a function of the total solute concentration. Experimental results indicated that adjusting the total polyelectrolyte concentration by the same factor relating the particle concentrations in the mobility measurements and deposition experiments resulted in matching the hematite surface properties in the mobility measurements to the deposition experiments. The experimental collision efficiency for hematite deposition was consistent with deposition under conditions of surface heterogeneity (i.e., the collision efficiency decreased gradually as electrostatic repulsion increased). The natural silica sand used (Ottawa 30) has a high degree of surface roughness and is expected to be chemically heterogeneous.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Environmental Science and Engineering
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Environmental Science and Engineering
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Hoffmann, Michael R. (advisor)
  • Morgan, James J. (advisor)
Thesis Committee:
  • Hoffmann, Michael R. (chair)
  • Morgan, James J.
  • Davis, Mark E.
  • Blake, Geoffrey A.
Defense Date:1 May 2002
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:03072011-155440857
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:6268
Deposited On:08 Mar 2011 15:57
Last Modified:18 Aug 2022 23:55

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