Zero-valent iron (ZVI) consists of an elemental iron core surrounded by a shell of corrosion products, especially magnetite. ZVI is used for in situ removal or immobilization of a variety of contaminants but the mechanisms for removal of arsenic remain controversial and the mobility of arsenic after reaction with ZVI is uncertain. These issues were addressed by separately studying reactions of As(V) with magnetite, commercial ZVI, and acid-treated ZVI. Strictly anoxic conditions were used. Adsorption of As(V) on magnetite was fast with pH dependence similar to previous reports using oxic conditions. As(V) was not reduced by magnetite and Fe(II) although the reaction is thermodynamically spontaneous. As(V) reactions with ZVI were also fast and no lag phase was observed which was contrary to previous reports. Commercial ZVI reduced As(V) to As(III) only when As(V) was adsorbed, i.e., for pH < 7. As(III) was not released to solution. Acid-treated ZVI reduced As(V) to As(0), shown using wet chemical analyses and XANES/EXAFS. Comparisons were drawn between reactivity of acid-treated ZVI and nano-ZVI; if true then acid-treated ZVI could provide similar reactive benefits at lower cost.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Engineering
- Environmental Chemistry
- Waste Management and Disposal
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis