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Document Type

Original Article

Subject Areas



Corncob; phenol formaldehyde resin; removal of toxic elements by low cost materials; Ion exchange separation


This paper is focused on the use of agricultural by-product as a replacement of the running low cost method for removing heavy toxic and/or radioactive metal ions from water and wastewater. The modification of Egyptian corncobs as a source of low cost plant and recycling material with phenol has been developed in presence of para-formaldedhyde as a cross linking agent. The modification of corncobs was investigated to enhance their natural capacity and could be considered as an added value to the waste plant. In this study, the characterization of the synthesized sulphonated corncob–phenol formaldehyde exchange resin is described and compared with the Dowex HYRW2 –Na polisher cation exchanger. It was found that the synthesized resin is stable in hot water (100oC), mineral acids (2M), in all most common solvents, and alkali solutions 1:0M withstand temperature up to 100oC. The modified corncob resin has an exchange capacity of 2.84 m.eq. /g dry resin –H+ form. The character of copolymer resin adsorption efficiency towards heavy toxic metals has been investigated via different concentrations of Mg (II), Mn (II), Fe (III), Cu (II), Zn (II), Cd (II) and Pb (II) individually in pure aqueous water and aqueous– HCl solutions. Finally a comparison of their removal performance with that of the commercial and the prepared resins was presented in this study where as the last one showed good adsorption efficiency.

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