PMID: 12102316Jul 10, 2002Paper

Cosolvent effects on sorption isotherm linearity

Journal of Contaminant Hydrology
Dermont C Bouchard


Sorption-desorption hysteresis, slow desorption kinetics, and other nonideal phenomena have been attributed to the differing sorptive characteristics of the natural organic polymers associated with soils and sediments. In this study, aqueous and mixed solvent systems were used to investigate the effects of a cosolvent, methanol, on sorption isotherm linearity with natural organic matter (NOM), and to evaluate whether these results support, or weaken, the rubbery/glassy polymer conceptualization of NOM. All of the sorption isotherms displayed some nonlinear character. Our data indicates that all of the phenanthrene and atrazine isotherms were nonlinear up to the highest equilibrium solution concentration to solute solubility in water or cosolvent ratios (Ce/Sw,c) used, approximately 0.018 and 0.070, respectively. Isotherm linearity was also observed to increase with volumetric methanol content (fc). This observation is consistent with the NOM rubbery/glassy polymer conceptualization: the presence of methanol in NOM increased isotherm linearity as do solvents in synthetic polymers, and suggests that methanol is interacting with the NOM, enhancing its homogeneity as a sorptive phase so that sorption is less bimodal as fc increases...Continue Reading


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