Effect of competitive interference on the biosorption of lead(II) by Chlorella vulgaris

M. H. El-Naas, F. Abu Al-Rub, I. Ashour, M. Al Marzouqi

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64 Citations (Scopus)


Batch experiments were carried out to asses the effect of Cu(II) and Zn(II) on the biosorption of lead(II) ions by non-living Chlorella vulgaris. The uptake of Pb(II) was examined for single, binary and ternary solutions at different initial concentrations and different pH values. The experimental results showed that the uptake increased with increasing pH from 3.0 to an optimum value of 5.0. The biosorption of Pb(II) was found to be adversely affected by the presence of Cu(II) ions, while Zn(II) ions seemed to have negligible effect on the process. The equilibrium data were fitted to four isotherm models: Langmuir, Freundlich, Sips and Dubinin-Radushkevich; the Sips isotherm gave the best fit for the data. Modeling of the controlling mechanisms indicated that both intrinsic kinetics and mass transfer played major roles in controlling the process. A new dimensionless parameter, Ψ, was defined to asses the relative contributions of the two mechanisms to the biosorption of lead(II). Mass transfer seemed to be the dominant mechanism at low initial lead(II) concentrations, while intrinsic kinetics dominates at high concentrations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1391-1399
Number of pages9
JournalChemical Engineering and Processing: Process Intensification
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2007


  • Biosorption
  • Competitive adsorption
  • Controlling mechanisms
  • Lead(II)
  • Modeling
  • Preferential adsorption

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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