The potential for the treatment of Antimony-containing Wastewater by Iron-based Adsorbents

Ren-Jian Deng, Chang-sheng Jin, Bozhi Ren, Baolin Hou, Andrew Hursthouse

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)
167 Downloads (Pure)


Antimony (Sb) and its compounds are considered as global priority pollutants. Elevated concentrations of antimony in natural and industrial process waste waters are of particular global concern. Particularly given interest in the potential toxicity and harm to the environment. Iron-based materials for adsorption treatment are widely regarded as advantageous for the removal of trace contaminants from waters and especially the search for efficient and low-cost removal techniques. In this paper, we review studies of the application of iron-based materials in the sorption treatment of antimony contaminated water. The most common examples of Sb sorption to these materials in studies on removal techniques are reviewed and discussed in relation to adsorption performance, influencing factors, mechanism, modelling of adsorption (isotherm, kinetic and thermodynamic models), advantages, drawbacks and the recent achievements in the field. Although iron-based adsorbents show promise, the following three aspects should to be studied further. Firstly, a number of iron based binary metal oxide adsorbents should be further explored as they show considerable performance compared to other systems. Secondly, the possibility of redox reactions and conversion between Sb(III) and Sb(V) during the adsorption process is unclear and requires further studies. Thirdly, in order to achieve optimized control of preferential adsorption sites and functional groups, the mechanism of antimony removal by iron-based adsorbents has to be qualitatively and quantitatively resolved by combining the advantages of advanced characterization techniques such as FTIR, XPS, AFM, XANES, and other spectroscopic methods. We provide details on the achievements and limitations of each of these stages and point to the need for further research.
Original languageEnglish
Article number794
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 16 Oct 2017


  • antimony
  • wastewater
  • iron-based sorbent
  • treatment
  • adsorption
  • Groundwater


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