Electrokinetic process has emerged as an important tool for remediating heavy metal-contaminated soil. The process can concentrate heavy metals into smaller soil volume even in the absence of hydraulic flow. This makes it an attractive soil pre-treatment method before other remediation techniques are applied such that the chemical consumption in the latter stage can be reduced. The present study evaluates the feasibility of electrokinetic process in concentrating lead (Pb) and chromium (Cr) in a co-contaminated soil using different types of wetting agents, namely 0.01 M NaNO3, 0.1 M citric acid and 0.1 M EDTA. The data obtained showed that NaNO3 and citric acid resulted in poor Pb electromigration in this study. As for Cr migration, these agents were also found to give lower electromigration rate especially at low pH region as a result of Cr(VI) adsorption and possible reduction into Cr(III). In contrast, EDTA emerged as the best wetting agent in this study as it formed water-soluble anionic complexes with both Pb and Cr. This provided effective one-way electromigration towards the anode for both ions, and they were accumulated into smaller soil volume with an enrichment ratio of 1.55–1.82. A further study on the application of approaching cathode in EDTA test showed that soil alkalisation was achieved, but this did not provide significant enhancement on electromigration for Pb and Cr. Nevertheless, the power consumption for electrokinetic process was decreased by 22.5 %.
- Electrokinetic soil remediation
- Approaching cathode
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- School of Energy, Geoscience, Infrastructure and Society - Professor
- School of Energy, Geoscience, Infrastructure and Society, Institute for Infrastructure & Environment - Professor
Person: Academic (Research & Teaching)