For the simultaneous adsorption of cationic dye (methylene blue, MB) and anionic dye (reactive red 198, RR198) from aqueous solution, magnetic activated carbon (MAC) nanocomposite as a promising adsorbent was prepared and used. The concentration of MB at different time intervals was determined using a UV-Vis spectrophotometer while the concentration of RR198 was determined using a high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) system. The effect of solution pH, contact time, adsorbent amount, and dye concentration were investigated. Also, both kinetic and isotherm experiments were studied. The optimum pH was 10 and 5.5 for adsorption of MB and RR198, respectively, and the equilibrium status was achieved after 120 min. The adsorption kinetics was controlled by the pseudo-second order kinetic model more than pseudo-first order. The best-fitted isotherms were Freundlich and Langmuir models for MB and RR198, respectively. The higher values of Freundlich adsorption capacity (Kf) for MB in comparison with RR198 refer to MAC affinity to remove cationic dyes more than anionic dyes. Apparently, there was no substantial change in the adsorption efficiency among the 10 adsorption–desorption cycles. Overall, MAC can be considered as an effective and efficient viable adsorbent for cationic and anionic dyes removal from industrial wastewaters.

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