Investigation of Organic Matter Content of Hungarian Oil Shale and Its Influence on Sorption of 2,4-Dichlorophenol
It is not only Total Organic Carbon content (TOC) but also the type of Organic Matter (OM) that the sorption of organic pollutants by soils or other natural absorbents is correlated with. Therefore, the characterization of organic components in the adsorbents is very important to elucidate sorption mechanisms.
Oil shale samples were collected in Pula, Hungary. The TOC content of the investigated samples was approximately 6.8-40.1 m/m %. The characterization of the organic matter in samples was carried out by using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), elemental analysis, thermal analysis, and GC-MS technics. The results predominantly indicated the presence of a low degree of the branching of aliphatic chain components in the samples. The Humic Substances (HS) content of the samples was only 1-6 m/m %, which could be determined after the treatment of oil shale with hydrogen peroxide.
The influence of the amount and type of organic material in oil shale samples was studied on the adsorption of 2,4-dichlorophenol (2,4-DCP) as a model contaminant. For this aim a series of batch equilibration experiments was carried out. The results show that the total organic carbon content of samples is a strong indicator of 2,4-DCP adsorption, while the HS content is an important feature controlling sorption capacity.
The study suggests that the special organic matter (kerogen) content of the oil shale plays a major role in its high adsorption capacity and in the nonlinearity of the isotherms. The HS covering the surface could decrease the sorption capacities despite the fact that though the amount of this organic material is quite low.