Adsorption of an antiseptic in a functionalized fixed-bed: Analysis of breakthrough scenarios and validation of simplistic models defending a novel proposition.

Publication date: Mar 28, 2024

Chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) and cetrimide, which are widely used in various pharmaceutical compositions, are considered potentially hazardous compounds. This combination was largely used during and after Covid 19 pandemic for sanitization. Removal of these two compounds from pharmaceutical waste-water with commercial and functionalized activated carbon in a packed bed column is reported. Effects of changes in bed height, flow rate, and initial concentration on the performance of the packed bed are analyzed using Yoon-Nelson, BDST and Thomas models for commercial scale-up operation. The effects of primary design parameters like bed depth and operating parameters like inflow rate and inlet concentration of influent wastewater are studied on the extent of removal of cetrimide and chlorhexidine gluconate. Granular activated carbon (GAC) is functionalized using HF and NHOH. The extent of enhanced adsorption using the functionalized GAC is demonstrated using breakthrough curves. K. H. Chu’s iconic proposition is validated. Breakthrough time (BT) increases with bed heights and it is less in the case of cetrimide as compared to chlorhexidine gluconate. This shows that cetrimide wins in the competition and occupies the pores much faster than CHG. Mostly, BT-CHG (GAC)

Concepts Keywords
Carbon Adsorption
Faster Breakthrough
Models Covid-19
Pandemic Packed bed column
Pharmaceutical Pharmaceutical wastewater
Semi-empirical models


Type Source Name
disease MESH Covid 19 pandemic
drug DRUGBANK Water
drug DRUGBANK Activated charcoal
disease VO time

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