Open Access

Structural Changes of Bacillus subtilis Biomass on Biosorption of Iron (II) from Aqueous Solutions: Isotherm and Kinetic Studies


Various microbial biomasses have been employed as biosorbents. Bacterial biomass has added advantages because of easy in production at a low cost. The study investigated the biosorption of iron from aqueous solutions by Bacillus subtilis. An optimum biosorption capacity of 7.25 mg of the metal per gram of the biosorbent was obtained by the Inductive Coupled Plasma Optical Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-OES) under the experimental conditions of initial metal concentration of 100 mg/l, pH 4.5, and biomass dose of 1 g/l at 30°C for 24 hrs. The data showed the best fit with the Freundlich isotherm model while following pseudo-first-order kinetics. Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) and Energy Dispersive X-ray (EDX) analysis confirmed iron biosorption as precipitates on the bacterial surface, and as a peak in the EDX spectrum. The functional hydroxyl, carboxyl, and amino groups that are involved in biosorption were revealed by the Fourier Transform Infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). The amorphous nature of the biosorbent for biosorption was indicated by the X-ray Diffraction (XRD) analysis. The biomass of B. subtilis exhibited a point zero charge (pHpzc) at 2.0.

Publication timeframe:
4 times per year
Journal Subjects:
Life Sciences, Microbiology and Virology