Table of Contents
ISRN Ceramics
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 672601, 11 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2012/672601
Research Article

Remediation of Polluted Water Using Natural Zeolitic Aluminosilicates/Lateritic Clay Ceramic Matrix Membrane

1Materials and Electronics Division, Centre for Energy Research and Development, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife 220005, Nigeria
2Department of Physics, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife 220005, Nigeria
3Department of Microbiology, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife 220005, Nigeria
4Department of Zoology, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife 220005, Nigeria

Received 22 December 2011; Accepted 11 January 2012

Academic Editors: Y.-C. Liou and S. Marinel

Copyright © 2012 E. Ajenifuja et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Microporous ceramic matrix membranes were prepared with complementary proportions of locally available zeolitic aluminosilicate materials and other abundant lateritic clay minerals. The membranes cast as circular disks (22.78 mm diameter and 2.11 mm thickness) were treated with silver nitrate solution to discourage microbial growth on their surface and then sintered at 9 0 0 ± 5 C for about 20 hours. Antimicrobial microfiltration process showed 87.24% to 100% bacterial rejection depending on the material combination ratio. Elemental characterization of the membrane materials was done using ion beam analysis (IBA) technique of particle induced X-ray emission (PIXE), while the physicochemical behaviour of the ceramic membranes was carried out through the analysis of the filtered water samples using atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS), total dissolved solids (TDS), microbial, and pH analyses. Compositional characterization of raw materials showed comparatively low contents of impurities, such as Fe and Ca, in the raw materials, but with high SiO2/Al2O3 ratios for the raw material which is important for zeolitic material synthesis. Regularly porous microstructure of mean pore diameter of between 50 nm and 100 nm was observed from the analyzed images obtained from ZEISS Supra 40 scanning electron microscope.