Fe0-nanoparticles-chitosan composite beads (CS-NZVI beads) were prepared and used to remove hexavalent chromium (Cr (VI)) from wastewater. Characterization with a scanning electron microscopy (SEM) demonstrated that with the increase of the concentration of CS from 5.0 to 20.0 g/L and NaOH from 0.5 to 2.0 mol/L, the average aperture size of the CS-NZVI beads decreased from 26.8 to 10.6 μm and 42.6 to 0.8 μm, respectively. Batch experiments revealed that the removal of Cr (VI) using CS-NZVI beads was consistent with pseudo first-order reaction kinetics. The rate constant increased with increasing NZVI dosage but decreased with the increase in pH values. The Freundlich isotherm described the adsorption process better, suggesting that the CS-NZVI beads were heterogeneous in the surface properties. At equilibrium qmax was 35.97 mg/g. The thermodynamics study suggested that Cr (VI) removal by CS-NZVI beads was an endothermic and spontaneous process, reflecting good affinity of the sorbent for Cr (VI) ions and increasing randomness at the solid–solution interface during the adsorption process. This result will be very useful to understand the effects of NZVI on heavy metal Cr (VI) removal from wastewater in the successful application.

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