Effect of four alcohols on adsorption, desorption, and movement of cadmium, nickel, and zinc through soils

Raina M. Miller, Linda Schnabel Stitzer, Janick F. Artiola, Wallace H. Fuller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Miscible-displacement experiments were conducted to compare the effects of aqueous soil solutions with ethyl alcohol, ethylene glycol, diethylene glycol, and triethylene glycol on the movement of metals through soils. Aqueous or alcohol solutions containing 1 mM each Cd, Ni, and Zn and 5 mM Ca were perfused through columns containing River Sand, Canelo loam (Canelo 1) or Mohave sandy clay loam (Mohave scl) until effluent metal concentrations (C) equaled influent concentrations (C0) or CC0-1 = 1. In general, the order of sorption was Zn > Ni > Cd in aqueous-perfused columns, while in alcohol-perfused columns sorption of Ni ≫ Cd ≥ Zn. In comparison to aqueous solutions, alcohols reduced total metal sorption by at least 25%. Metal sorption was best correlated to cation exchange capacity of the soil, sorption of metals being greatest in the Mohave scl and least in the River Sand. After CC0-1 = 1 was reached, columns were leached with deionized water. While leaching did not affect the sorption of metals in columns which had been perfused with aqueous solvents, sorption behavior of metals changed significantly in columns which had been perfused with alcohol solvents. Leaching caused desorption of 5 to 30% of the sorbed Ni. In general, Cd was desorbed (up to 45%) from the soils tested. The exceptions were River Sand columns perfused with diethylene and triethylene glycol in which additional Cd was sorbed to the soil from the soil solution. Additional Zn was sorbed in all columns tested with the exception of the Canelo 1 column perfused with ethyl alcohol.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1855-1866
Number of pages12
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


Dive into the research topics of 'Effect of four alcohols on adsorption, desorption, and movement of cadmium, nickel, and zinc through soils'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this