A new-fashioned fabrication recipe for a magnetic carbon nanocomposite (Fe3O4@C) via pyrolysis of sugar with magnetite (Fe3O4) nanoparticles was developed for the practical environmental application as an adsorbent. In order to synthesize Fe3O4@C, the thermal degradation of sugar was firstly investigated via thermo-gravimetric analysis (TGA) to explore the optimal pyrolytic conditions for fabricating Fe3O4@C. This study laid a great emphasis on the physicochemical characterization of pyrogenic Fe3O4@C through various analytical techniques, which experimentally validated that Fe3O4@C retained thin graphitic carbon layers containing carboxyl groups on the surface with the point of zero charge (pHpzc) of 7.5. Based on adsorption tests of methylene blue (MB), it was found the optimal mass ratio of sugar to Fe3O4 was 0.15 with pyrolysis temperature of 500 °C. The adsorption capacity of Fe3O4@C for MB was 52.6 mg g−1 and MB adsorption showed a strong pH dependence, which implies an active role of electrostatic interactions in the adsorption process. In regeneration experiments, Fe3O4@C retained 84% of its initial adsorption capacity after completing four consecutive adsorption cycles.
- Carbon/FeO nanocomposite
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Engineering
- Environmental Chemistry
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis