1Polymer Research Center, Department of Chemical Engineering, College of Engineering, Razi University, Kermanshah, Iran.
2Department of Mechanical Engineering, Razi University, Kermanshah, Iran
3Department of Chemistry, University of Victoria, 2329 West Mall, Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z4, Canada.
4Environmental Research Center, Faculty of Chemistry, Razi University, Kermanshah, Iran
Novel electrospun polyacrylonitrile (PAN) nanofiber mats and PAN fabric were chemically modified by dissolved anhydrous stannous chloride diethyl ether saturated with hydrogen chloride to contain aldehyde groups on their surfaces, which are suitable for ammonium adsorption due to their high adsorption affinity for NH4+ ion. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and Fourier-transform infrared spectra (FT-IR) were employed to characterize the prepared adsorbents. FT-IR spectra of these adsorbents confirmed that aldehyde groups are successfully formed on the surface of these chemically modified adsorbents. The aldehydic electrospun PAN nanofiber mats and aldehydic PAN fabric were assessed for their chelating property with NH4+ ion from aqueous solution. The effects of contact time on the amounts of ammonium adsorbed into the prepared adsorbents were also studied. Results revealed that ammonium removal increased by increasing contact time which finally reached equilibrium at about 3.5 h and 4 h for aldehydic electrospun PAN nanofiber mats and aldehydic PAN fabric, respectively. The adsorption performance of these prepared adsorbents for ammonium adsorption with initial ammonium concentration of 300 ppm via isotherm studies was investigated. The maximum ammonium removal efficiency (% R) was 48.33 and 70 for aldehydic electrospun PAN nanofiber mats and PAN fabric, respectively. Results indicated that the adsorption of ammonium by both prepared adsorbents followed Langmuir isotherm.