Contamination of surface and groundwater with glyphosate, used widely on crops to control weeds, can cause severe environmental damage. Processes for glyphosate removal from water bodies have been developed, but few are effective and all are expensive. This objective of the present study was to investigate the use of a layered double oxide as a potentially effective and inexpensive material to remove glyphosate from water. Equilibrium, kinetics, and adsorption mechanisms were evaluated, in addition to the effects of competing anions and temperature on glyphosate adsorption. Up to 95% of glyphosate was removed from a synthetic solution in 50 min by Zn2Al-LDO (layered double oxide in Zn/Al ratio of 2:1) at pH 10. The adsorption isotherms were type L and the Langmuir model best fitted the experimental data, with a qmax value of 191.96 μg mg–1 at 25°C. The XRD pattern did not support the hypothesis of intercalation of glyphosate anions, whereas Fourier-transform infrared and solid-state 13C and 31P magic angle spinning nuclear magnetic resonance confirmed the adsorption of glyphosate anions on the Zn2Al-LDO surface, through carboxylate and phosphonate moiety interactions with end-on and side-on modes. The degree of removal of glyphosate increased with increasing temperature and decreased with increasing concentration of competing anions, with carbonate anions having the most prominent effect on the inhibition of glyphosate adsorption. The adsorption kinetics fitted a pseudo-first order law. Moreover, the intraparticle diffusion model suggested that the adsorption process depends on the formation and thickness of the film at the solution/solid interface.

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