Sorption kinetics of organic chemicals. Methods, models and mechanisms

Mark L. Brusseau, P. S.C. Rao

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

15 Scopus citations


Rate-limited or, nonequilibrium, sorption of organic chemicals by natural sorbents (i.e., soils, sediments, and aquifer materials) has been a topic of interest for quite some time. The impact of nonequilibrium sorption on transport of organic chemicals in the subsurface has recently come under increased scrutiny as groundwater contamination has become a major issue. The purpose of this paper is to provide a brief review of the rate-limited sorption of organic chemicals by natural sorbents. The proposed processes held responsible for nonequilibrium sorption will be presented, as will a discussion of recent experiments whose results provide elucidation of rate-limiting mechanisms. Several models have been proposed to simulate sorption kinetics, and the transport of solutes influenced by nonequilibrium sorption; these will be reviewed. A large array of techniques are available for the study of sorption kinetics. However, much of this work has been oriented towards the study of inorganic chemicals. We will discuss two techniques that, in addition to the standard batch time study, have received the greatest amount of use in investigating nonequilibrium sorption of organic chemicals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSSSA Special Publication (Soil Science Society of America)
PublisherPubl by Soil Science Soc of America
Number of pages22
ISBN (Print)0891187952
StatePublished - 1991
EventRates of Soil Chemical Processes - Las Vegas, NV, USA
Duration: Oct 17 1989Oct 17 1989

Publication series

NameSSSA Special Publication (Soil Science Society of America)
ISSN (Print)0081-1904


OtherRates of Soil Chemical Processes
CityLas Vegas, NV, USA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering


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