Study of flocculation performance and mechanism of ultrafine montmorillonite particles with NPAM
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Anhui University of Science and Technology
Publication date: 2022-03-29
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Fanfei Min   

Anhui University of Science and Technology
Physicochem. Probl. Miner. Process. 2022;58(3):147790
Ultrafine montmorillonite particles are the main clay minerals in industrial wastewater. In order to explore the flocculation performance and mechanism of flocculant with montmorillonite, the effects of nonionic polyacrylamide (NPAM) dosage and molecular weight on flocculation effect were studied using a flocculation sedimentation experiment. The morphology of flocs was observed by metallographic microscope and scanning electron microscope, and the microscopic adsorption mechanism was studied utilizing density functional theory (DFT). The results show that the best reagent system for the montmorillonite sample is that the molecular weight of NPAM is 14 million and the added amount is 100 g/t. The floc size increases with rising NPAM dosage, forming a unique multi-level compact space network structure through polymer bridging. The adsorption energy of acrylamide on the Na-(001) surface of montmorillonite is -108.81 kJ/mol, which is significantly higher than -50.66 kJ/mol on the None-(001) surface. Hydrogen bonding is not the main reason for the adsorption of acrylamide on the montmorillonite surface. NPAM mainly causes the flocculation and sedimentation of montmorillonite through the processes of polymer bridging and electrostatic attraction. This study can provide a theoretical basis for the design and synthesis of new flocculants.
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