Sorption kinetics of naphthalene and phenanthrene in loess soils

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


A laboratory study was executed to investigate the effect of surfactants to enhance sorption of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) contaminants in loess soil. Phenanthrene and naphthalene were chosen as organic contaminant indicators in loess soil modi. fied by the cation surfactant hexadecyltrimethylammonium (HDTMA) bromide. The kinetic behavior of sorption during transport in natural and modified loess soil was studied. The results indicated that sorption rate in the cation surfactant modified loess soils was at least 3 times faster than that of the natural soil. A first-order kinetics model fitted the sorption data well for both soils. The sorption rates of the two organic compounds were related to their primary residual quantity on the soils. The experiments showed that sorption amounts approached constant values approximately within 30 and 90 min for naphthalene and phenanthrene at 298-318 K, respectively. The rate constants, however, displayed negative correlation with increasing temperature. With changing temperature, the activation energy was calculated at -6.196-1.172 kJ/ mol for naphthalene and) 28.86-15.70 kJ/ mol for phenanthrene at 298-318 K. The results can be used to predict the sorption kinetics of phenanthrene and naphthalene in loess soils, and in a wider perspective, be used to better understand the transport of petroleum contaminants in the soil environment.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Water Engineering


  • sorption, phenanthrene, naphthalene, loess soils, vontamination, China, kinetics
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)467-474
JournalEnvironmental Geology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Publication categoryResearch