Effects of Dissolved Carbonate on Arsenate Adsorption and Surface Speciation at the Hematite-Water Interface

Yuji Arai, D. L. Sparks, J. A. Davis

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Effects of dissolved carbonate on arsenate [As(V)] reactivity and surface speciation at the hematite-water interface were studied as a function of pH and two different partial pressures of carbon dioxide gas [PCO2 = 10 -3.5 atm and ∼0; CO2-free argon (Ar)] using adsorption kinetics, pseudo-equilibrium adsorption/titration experiments, extended X-ray absorption fine structure spectroscopic (EXAFS) analyses, and surface complexation modeling. Different adsorbed carbonate concentrations, due to the two different atmospheric systems, resulted in an enhanced and/or suppressed extent of As(V) adsorption. As(V) adsorption kinetics [4 g L -1, [As(V)]0 = 1.5 mM and / = 0.01 M NaCl] showed carbonate-enhanced As(V) uptake in the air-equilibrated systems at pH 4 and 6 and at pH 8 after 3 h of reaction. Suppressed As(V) adsorption was observed in the air-equilibrated system in the early stages of the reaction at pH 8. In the pseudo-equilibrium adsorption experiments [1 g L-1, [As(V)] 0 = 0.5 mM and / = 0.01 M NaCl], in which each pH value was held constant by a pH-stat apparatus, effects of dissolved carbonate on As(V) uptake were almost negligible at equilibrium, but titrant (0.1 M HCl) consumption was greater in the air-equilibrated systems (PCO2 = 10-3.5 atm)than in the CO2-free argon system at pH 4-7.75. The EXAFS analyses indicated that As(V) tetrahedral molecules were coordinated on iron octahedral via bidentate mononuclear (≈2.8 Å) and bidentate binuclear (≈3.3 Å) bonding at pH 4.5-8 and loading levels of 0.46-3.10 μM m-2. Using the results of the pseudoequilibrium adsorption data and the XAS analyses, the pH-dependent As(V) adsorption under the PCO2 = 10-3.5 atm and the CO2-free argon system was modeled using surface complexation modeling, and the results are consistent with the formation of nonprotonated bidentate surface species at the hematite surfaces. The results also suggest that the acid titrant consumption was strongly affected by changes to electrical double-layer potentials caused by the adsorption of carbonate in the air-equilibrated system. Overall results suggest that the effects of dissolved carbonate on As(V) adsorption were influenced by the reaction conditions [e.g., available surface sites, initial As(V) concentrations, and reaction times]. Quantifying the effects of adsorbed carbonate may be important in predicting As(V) transport processes in groundwater, where iron oxide-coated aquifer materials are exposed to seasonally fluctuating partial pressures of CO2(g).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)817-824
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 1 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Environmental Chemistry


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