Elimination of copper and lead from wastewater using banana peels.
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Water quality monitoring in developing countries like Uganda is inadequate, especially in stream water affected by urban effluents and runoff. The purpose of this research was to investigate the efficiency of natural adsorbents in the form of Banana peels in the extraction of toxic heavy metals from industrial wastewater. Batch adsorption process was employed to remove Copper (II) from the contaminated wastewater. The factors of adsorbent dosage, pH, temperature, agitation time, and the initial concentrations of the heavy metal ions were studied at room temperature as a reference to the removal rate of the heavy metals from the wastewater sample. This study showed that the Banana peel is a very good adsorbent for the removal of Copper from the wastewater, where uptake of the metal ions increased with increase in temperature, adsorbent dosage and pH, but gradually decreased with increase in agitation time. At optimized pH and bio sorbent load, 10mg/L of the metal ions of Copper could be removed to the extent 95.8%, within 2 hours. The observed adsorption data was also interpreted in terms of Langmuir and Freundlich adsorption isotherm models. The calculated isotherm data fitted more adequately with Freundlich model, higher correlation coefficient R2 than the Langmuir model, indicating heterogeneity of adsorption sites due to the different functional groups in cellulose. The maximum adsorption capacity of dried Bananapeel was 2.395mg/g of Copper (II) ions Wastewater sample was obtained from CIPLA Quality Chemicals Uganda Limited production unit. Selected heavy metal (Copper) was determined using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometry. Physicochemical parameters were also determined for Electrical conductivity, pH, Total Suspended Solids (TSS), Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) and Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD). Results indicate that the concentrations of the heavy metals in the wastewater sample were significant. The economic analysis showed that Banana peel powder was more cost effective, with a high extraction efficiency of the heavy metals than with commercial activated carbon. Hence, it is more economically viable to remove the toxic heavy metals from wastewater sample using Banana peel adsorption.