Adsorptive removal of some Cl-VOC's as dangerous environmental pollutants using feather-like γ-Al2O3 derived from aluminium waste with life cycle analysis

Samih A. Halawy, Ahmed I. Osman*, Neha Mehta, Adel Abdelkader, Dai Viet N. Vo, David W. Rooney

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Herein, we designed a cost-effective preparation method of nanocomposite γ-Al2O3 derived from Al-waste. The produced material has a feather-like morphology, and its adsorption of some chlorinated volatile organic compounds (Cl-VOC's) such as benzyl chloride, chloroform and carbon tetrachloride (C7H7Cl, CHCl3 and CCl4) was investigated due to their potential carcinogenic effect on humans. It showed a characteristic efficiency towards the adsorptive removal of these compounds over a long period, i.e., eight continuous weeks, at ambient temperature and atmospheric pressure. After 8-weeks, the adsorbed amounts of these compounds were determined as: 325.3 mg C7H7Cl, 247.6 mg CHCl3 and 253.3 mg CCl4 per g of γ-Al2O3, respectively. CCl4 was also found to be dissociatively adsorbed on the surface of γ-Al2O3, whereas CHCl3 and C7H7Cl were found to be associatively adsorbed. The prepared γ-Al2O3 has a relatively high surface area (i.e., 192.2 m2. g−1) and mesoporosity with different pore diameters in the range of 25–47 Å. Furthermore, environmental impacts of the nanocomposite γ-Al2O3 preparation were evaluated using life cycle assessment. For prepartion of adsorbent utilising 1 kg of scrap aluminium wire, it was observed that potential energy demand was 288 MJ, climate change potential was 19 kg CO2 equivalent, acidification potential was 0.115 kg SO2 equivalent and eutrophication potential was 0.018 kg PO43− equivalent.

Original languageEnglish
Article number133795
Early online date07 Feb 2022
Publication statusPublished - May 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Dr Ahmed I. Osman wishes to acknowledge the support of The Bryden Centre project (Project ID VA5048 ). The Bryden Centre project is supported by the European Union's INTERREG VA Programme, managed by the Special EU Programmes Body ( SEUPB ). Dr Neha Mehta acknowledges funding from The Centre for Advanced Sustainable Energy ( CASE ). CASE is funded through Invest NI's Competence Centre Programme and aims to transform the sustainable energy sector through business research. Sincere thanks to Charlie Farrell for proofreading of the manuscript.


  • Adsorption
  • Circular economy
  • Life cycle assessment
  • Temperature programmed desorption
  • Volatile organic compounds
  • γ-AlO

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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