Ligand-modified colloid enhanced ultrafiltration. Use of nitrilotriacetic acid derivatives for the selective removal of lead from aqueous solution

Jim D. Roach, Sherril D. Christian, Edwin E. Tucker, Richard W. Taylor, John F. Scamehorn

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In ligand-modified, colloid-enhanced ultrafiltration (LM-CEUF), a ligand that selectively complexes target ions (e.g., lead) also associates with a water-soluble colloid, such as a surfactant micelle or polyelectrolyte. The colloid, associated ligand, and target ion are then concentrated using ultrafiltration, producing a filtrate with a low concentration of the target ion. Dialysis, ultrafiltration, and potentiometric titration experiments have been used to investigate the effectiveness of four nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA) derivatives in the removal of lead from aqueous solution through LM-CEUF. The ligands are 2-phenyl nitrilotriacetic acid (PNTA), 2-[N, N-di-(carboxymethyl)]amino-octanoic acid (HNTA), 2-[N,N-di-(carboxymethyl)]amino-dodecanoic acid (DNTA), and 2-[N,N-di-(carboxymethyl)]amino-3-sulfopropionic acid (SNTA). The colloids used were the cationic polyelectrolyte poly(diallyldimethylammonium chloride) (PDADMAC) and the cationic surfactant cetylpyridinium nitrate (CPNO3). In equilibrium dialysis and ultrafiltration (UF) experiments, SNTA and PDADMAC systems provided effective lead removal. In semiequilibrium dialysis and UF experiments, DNTA and CPNO3 systems also provided effective lead removal. The effects of pH, ionic strength, competing ions, and colloid concentration were investigated for each ligand system. Ligand protonation constants and ligand-metal stability constants were obtained for SNTA in both water and solutions of PDADMAC and for DNTA in solutions of CPNO3. Ligand regeneration through pH adjustment and metal precipitation with various anions was also demonstrated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1925-1947
Number of pages23
JournalSeparation Science and Technology
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 26 May 2003


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Filtration and Separation

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