Effects of low molecular weight organic acids on adsorption of quinclorac by sepiolite

Lihua Yang, Yaocheng Deng, Daoxin Gong, Haifeng Luo, Xuguo Zhou, Fangzhou Jiang

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6 Scopus citations


The effects of low molecular weight organic acids (LMWOAs) on the adsorption of quinclorac by sepiolite were investigated using laboratory batch technique. Experiments were conducted with two natural sepiolite samples with different crystal structures and chemical compositions and high-purity sepiolite. The LMWOAs used were acetic, oxalic, and citric acid. And the adsorption mechanism was characterized using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), X-ray diffraction (XRD), and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). Our analysis revealed that adsorption of quinclorac on α-sepiolite and β-sepiolite was inhibited in the presence of 4 mmol L−1 LMWOAs, whereas LMWOAs stimulated the adsorption of quinclorac in the high-purity sepiolite. Inhibition or stimulation varied across the different types of organic acids. The adsorption isotherms in the presence of 4 mmol L−1 LMWOAs were better explained by Freundlich and linear model. The effect of organic acid concentrations (0–32 mmol L−1) on the adsorption of quinclorac by the three sepiolite samples varies greatly depending on the type of organic acid and the property of sepiolite. FTIR, XRD, and XPS analyses showed that LMWOAs bound strongly to the Si–O bond structure, and Si–O-quinclorac-acetic acid (oxalic acid or citric acid) was formed on the surface of β-sepiolite. The adsorption of quinclorac by β-sepiolite was via hydrogen bond, complexation reactions, and charge transfer in the presence of LMWOAs. These results indicate that LMWOAs affect quinclorac adsorption through various interactions involving competition, electrostatic attraction, bridging action, and hydrogen bonding.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9582-9597
Number of pages16
JournalEnvironmental Science and Pollution Research
Issue number8
StatePublished - Feb 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 51709103; 51909089) and the Youth Science Foundation of Hunan Agricultural University (Grant No. 15QN30).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020, Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.


  • Adsorption
  • Low molecular weight organic acids
  • Mechanism
  • Quinclorac
  • Sepiolite

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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