Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Sorption characteristics of organic compounds on hexadecyltrimethylammonium-smectite

January 1, 1988

When hexadedyltrimethylammonium (HDTMA) ion is exchanged for metal cations like calcium in smectite, the sorptive properties of the clay are greatly modified. The resultant HDTMA-smectite complex behaves as a dual sorbent, in the sorption of organic compounds, in which the mineral fraction functions as a solid adsorbent and the organic (HDTMA) phase as a partition medium. Capacities of mineral adsorption and partition uptake by HDTMA in the HDTMA-smectites are illustrated by sorption of benzene, trichloroethene (TCE), and water as vapors on the dry sample and by sorption of benzene and TCE from water. The exchanged HDTMA in clay is found to be a much more powerful partition medium than ordinary soil organic matter in the uptake of benzene and TCE. Based on this finding, HDTMA-smectite appears to be an effective sorbent for removing organic contaminants from water. It is suggested that such sorptive organo-clay complexes could be used to enhance the containment capabilities of clay landfill liners and bentonite slurry walls.

Citation Information

Publication Year 1988
Title Sorption characteristics of organic compounds on hexadecyltrimethylammonium-smectite
DOI 10.2136/sssaj1988.03615995005200030010x
Authors Stephen A. Boyd, Max M. Mortland, Cary T. Chiou
Publication Type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Series Title Soil Science Society of America Journal
Series Number
Index ID 70185530
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Toxic Substances Hydrology Program