INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH AND PUBLIC HEALTH
Volumen: 14, Numero: 7, Páginas:  p.
The Zero Valent Iron (ZVI) is the material most commonly used for permeable reactive barriers (PRB). For technical and economic reasons, hoter reactive substances usable in alternative to ZVI are investigated. The present study takes into account a vegetable fibers, the cabuya, investigating its capacity to retain heavy metals. The capacity of the cabuya fibers to adsorb heavy metals was verified in laboratory, by batch and column tests. The batch tests were carried out with cabuya and ZVI, using copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), cadmium (Cd) and lead (Pb). The results obtained by the cabuya fibers showed a very high adsorption capacity of heavy metals and resulted very similar to those obtained for the broom fibers in a previous study. The high value of the absorption capacity of the cabuya fibers was also confirmed by the analogous comparison made with the results of the batch tests carried out with ZVI. Column tests, using copper, zinc and cadmium, allowed to determine for the cabuya fibers the maximum removal percentage of the heavy metals considered, the corresponding times and the time ranges of the release phase. For each metal considered, for a given length and three different times, the constant of degradation of cabuya fibers was determined, obtaining values very close to those reported for broom fibers. The scalar behavior of heavy metal removal percentage was verified. An electron microscope analysis allowed to compare, by SEM images, the characteristics of the cabuya and broom fibers. Finally, to investigate the chemical structure of cabuya and broom fibers, the FTIR technique was used, obtaining their respective infrared spectra.