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Linear and nonlinear behavior of crosslinked chitosan/N-doped graphene quantum dot nanocomposite films in cadmium cation uptake

Abstract

In this research, crosslinked nanocomposite (NC) films involving chitosan (CS) and various percentages of nitrogen-doped graphene quantum dot (NGQD) were prepared via ultrasonic acoustic accompanied by adding glutaraldehyde as a crosslinking agent (henceforth nominated as CCS/NGQD NC). The objective of this study is the design of a safe adsorbent of CCS/NGQD NC under easy and low-cost conditions to investigate the mechanisms of Cd(II) ion sorption and find an appropriate model for the kinetics of removal. By comparing adsorption ability of CCS/NGQD NC films 2, 5 and 8 wt% under the same conditions, the CCS NC film with 5 wt% of NGQD was selected as the best mass ratio to investigate the adsorption process. To understand the nature of the sorption behavior, the experimental data were used to calculate pseudo-first-order, pseudo-second-order, and intra-particle diffusion kinetic models, and various isotherm models in linear and nonlinear regression. In addition, some error functions were applied to detect, either linear or nonlinear model is suitable to examine the experimental data and prevent any huge mistakes. The linear Freundlich equation well describes the uptake of Cd(II) ion by CCS film and CCS/NGQD NC film 5 wt%. Based on linear Langmuir, the maximum adsorption capacities of CCS film and CCS/NGQD NC film 5 wt% were 34.46 and 35.00 mg·g−1, respectively. Kinetic analysis indicates that the mechanism of removal is described by nonlinear pseudo-second order model for CCS film and linear pseudo-second order model for the CCS/NGQD NC film 5 wt%. Also, thermodynamic parameters were analyzed in different temperatures. The obtained thermodynamic values prove that Cd(II) ion adsorption on both adsorbents is feasible, spontaneous and endothermic.

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