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E-Journal of Chemistry
Volume 8 (2011), Issue 3, Pages 992-999

Effect of Heat Treatment on the Surface Properties of Activated Carbons

Meriem Belhachemi1 and Fatima Addoun2

1Faculté Des Sciences ET Technologie, Université De BECHAR, B.P 417, 08000-Béchar, Algeria
2Laboratoire D’étude Physico Chimique Des Matériaux ET Application à L’environnement, Faculté de Chimie, USTHB, B.P.32, El Alia 16111-Bab Ezzouar Alger, Algeria

Received 7 July 2010; Accepted 3 October 2010

Copyright © 2011 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. 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.


This work reports the effect of heat treatment on the porosity and surface chemistry of two series of activated carbons prepared from a local agricultural biomass material, date pits, by physical activation with carbon dioxide and steam. Both series samples were oxidized with nitric acid and subsequently heat treated under N2 at 973 K in order to study the effect of these treatments in porosity and surface functional groups of activated carbons. When the activated carbons were heat treated after oxidation the surface area and the pore volume increase for both activated carbons prepared by CO2 and steam activations. However the amount of surface oxygen complexes decreases, the samples keep the most stable oxygen surface groups evolved as CO by temperature-programmed desorption experiments at high temperature. The results show that date pits can be used as precursors to produce activated carbons with a well developed porosity and tailored oxygen surface groups.