Background: The widespread entrance of antibiotics from the pharmaceuticals industry and
human medication into aquatic environment increased concern over public health. Due to the importance
of the antibiotics removal, a considerable amount of patents reported the conventional methods
for the removal of antibiotics from the wastewaters. However, newly of patents reported improvements
in the removal capacity. The present study focuses on the removal of Penicillin using a nanocomposite
of zinc oxide/natural-Zeolite.
Methods: A nano-composite of zinc oxide/natural-Zeolite was synthesized by mechanical method. The
obtained microstructure was characterized by FE-SEM, XRD, EDX, and DLS techniques. The prepared
nanocomposite is used for the removal of penicillin from aqueous solution.
Results: Two different phases were identified in XRD patterns as hexagonal ZnO and orthorhombic
Zeolite with the average crystal size of 86 and 141 nm respectively. The prepared nanocomposite consists
of uniform particles with the mean diameter of near 91 nm. The prepared nanocomposite is used
for the removal of penicillin from aqueous solution. It exhibited high removal performance in adsorption
of penicillin antibiotic. The effects of penicillin concentration, catalyst amount, and pH on the adsorption
were studied. The equilibrium adsorption data were analyzed using Langmuir, Temkin and
Freundlich equations at room temperature. The Langmuir, Freundlich and Temkin constants were determined
as -1.93, 410.2, and 3.87 respectively. The adsorption of Penicillin is followed from Freundlich
(R2 = 0.979) equation. Adsorption kinetics followed the intra-particle diffusion model.
Conclusion: A high efficient procedure for the removal of penicillin was developed using ZnO/
natural-Zeolite nano-composite as useful catalysts.