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Topic: Activated charcoal  (Read 2450 times)

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Offline Skiznibbler

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Activated charcoal
« on: February 14, 2008, 10:04:51 PM »
In wikipedia they tell you
Activated carbon does not bind well to certain chemicals, including alcohols, glycols, ammonia, strong acids and bases, metals and most inorganics, such as lithium, sodium, iron, lead, arsenic, fluorine, and boric acid.
but they don't tell you what kinds of substances active charcoal DOES absorb. What properties makes a substance a good absorbate for porous substances like activated charcoal? Is there anywhere I can find a list of suitable absorbates for activated charcoal?

Offline minimal

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Re: Activated charcoal
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2008, 05:26:45 PM »

Offline Arkcon

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Re: Activated charcoal
« Reply #2 on: February 18, 2008, 06:14:15 PM »
Historically, people have known that filtering a solution through carbon would remove some "dark colors" and "bad smells".  Over time, the advantage of "activating" the carbon, i.e. with heat, steam and pressure to increase it's surface area, made it even better for these applications.  Compounds with multiple fused aromatic rings bind quite well to carbon's graphite-like structure, compounds which coincidentally, tend to be colored and have odors.  You're initial assumption, {here}  that carbon binds primarily polar and ionic compounds, is not correct.  Consider, everyone has the carbon filters on the kitchen tap these days, what do they say they remove -- pesticides, odors, yes, salts, not likely, no.
Hey, I'm not judging.  I just like to shoot straight.  I'm a man of science.

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