Adsorption and advanced oxidation processes are being extensively used for treatment of wastewater containing dye chemicals. In this study, the adsorption and Fenton behavior of iron rich Terra Rosa soil was investigated for the treatment of aqueous anthraquinone dye (Reactive Blue 19 (RB19)) solutions. The impact of pH, initial dye concentration, soil loading rate, contact time and temperature was systematically investigated for adsorption process. A maximum removal efficiency of dye (86.6%) was obtained at pH 2, soil loading of 10 g/L, initial dye concentration of 25 mg/L, and contact time of 120 min. Pseudo-first-order, pseudo-second-order, Elovich, and Weber–Morris kinetic models were applied to describe the adsorption mechanism and sorption kinetic followed a pseudo-second-order kinetic model. Moreover, Langmuir, Freundlich and Temkin isotherm models were used to investigate the isothermal mechanism and equilibrium data were well represented by the Langmuir equation. The maximum adsorption capacity of soil was found as 4.11 mg/g using Langmuir adsorption isotherm. The effect of soil loading and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) dosage was solely tested for Fenton oxidation process. The highest removal efficiency of dye (89.4%) was obtained at pH 2, H2O2 dosage of 10 mM, soil loading of 5 g/L, initial dye concentration of 50 mg/L, and contact time of 60 min. Thermodynamic studies showed that when the adsorption dosage of dye was 25 mg/L at 293–313 K, adsorption enthalpy (ΔH) and entropy (ΔS) were negative and adsorption free energy (ΔG) was positive. This result indicated that the adsorption was exothermic. Morphological characteristics of the soil were evaluated by X-ray fluorescence (XRF), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and attenuated total reflection Fourier transform infrared (ATR-FTIR) spectroscopy before and after the adsorption and oxidation process.

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