Adsorption isotherms and kinetics for dibenzothiophene on activated carbon and carbon nanotube doped with nickel oxide nanoparticles

Mazen K. Nazal, Ghassan A. Oweimreen, Mazen Khaled, Muataz Atieh, Isam H. Aljundi, Abdalla M. Abulkibash

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Activated carbon (AC) and multiwall carbon nanotubes (CNT) doped with 1, 5 and 10% Ni in the form of nickel oxide nanoparticles were prepared using the wetness impregnation method. These percentages were denoted by the endings NI1, NI5 and NI10 in the notations ACNI1, ACNI5, ACNI10 and CNTNI1, CNTNI5, CNTNIL10, respectively. The physicochemical properties for these adsorbents were characterized using N2 adsorption-desorption surface area analyzer, thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA), scanning electron microscopy, energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, field-emission transmission electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction and X-ray photoelectron spectrometre. Adsorption isotherms were obtained and desulphurization kinetics were carried out on solutions of dibenzothiophene (DBT) and thiophene in a model fuel. The efficiencies of DBT and thiophene removal were reported. The adsorption isotherms fitted the Langmuir and Freundlich models. The highest adsorption capacity for DBT was 74 ± 5 mg g-1 on ACNI5; the maximum adsorption capacities of the other adsorbents followed the trend ACNI1 > ACNI10 > AC > CNTNI5 > CNTNI1 > CNTNI10 > CNT. The adsorption rates for DBT and thiophene followed pseudo-second-order kinetics. The selective removal by these adsorbents of DBT relative to thiophene and naphthalene was evaluated. The adsorbents' reusability and the effect of the percentage of aromatic compounds on their adsorption capacity were also reported.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)437-450
Number of pages14
JournalBulletin of Materials Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016



  • Adsorptive removal
  • Model fuel
  • Reusability
  • Selectivity
  • Thiophene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Mechanics of Materials

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