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Activated Porous Carbon Derived From Tea And Plane Tree Leaves Biomass For The Removal Of Pharmaceutical Compounds From Wastewaters

Efstathios V. Liakos, Kyriazis Rekos, Dimitrios A. Giannakoudakis, Athanasios C. Mitropoulos, Jie Fu, George Z. Kyzas

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The aim of the present study is the synthesis of activated carbon (AC) from different agricultural wastes such as tea and plane tree leaves in order to use them for the removal of pramipexole dihydrochloride (PRM) from aqueous solutions. Two different carbonization and synthetic activation protocols were followed, with the herein-proposed ultrasound-assisted two-step protocol leading to better-performing carbon, especially for the tea-leaf-derived material (TEA(char)-AC). Physicochemical characterizations were performed by Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), N2 physisorption, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). TEA(char)-AC presented the highest surface area (1151 m2/g) and volume of micro and small mesopores. Maximum capacity was found at 112 mg/g for TEA(char)-AC at an optimum pH equal to 3, with the Langmuir isotherm model presenting a better fitting. The removal efficiency of TEA(char)-AC is higher than other biomass-derived carbons and closer to benchmark commercial carbons.