A facile fabrication of sepiolite mineral nanofibers with excellent adsorption performance for Cd2+ ions
In this work, sepiolite mineral nanofibers are facilely prepared by a microwave-hydrogen peroxide method, and the bulk densities of the samples are adopted to evaluate the defibering effect. The samples are systematically characterized through X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, specific surface area measurement and zeta potential determination, and the adsorptive performance for heavy metal ions in aqueous solution is studied using cadmium ions as the representative. It is found that the specific surface area and cumulative pore volume increase respectively up to 109.21 m2 g−1 and 0.234 cm3 g−1 under the microwave power of 400 W, while the zeta potential reaches a maximum when the pH is 5.0. The adsorption efficiency of sepiolite mineral nanofibers for cadmium ions can reach 68.6% as the optimal value. The as-fabricated sepiolite nanofibers can be regarded as a low-cost and environmentally friendly material which is a promising candidate for heavy metal ion removal from industrial wastewater.