Journal of Hazardous Materials, Vol.368, 52-62, 2019
Effect of Staphylococcus epidermidis on U(VI) sequestration by Al-goethite
Effect of Staphylococcus epidermidis (S. epidermidis) on U(VI) sequestration by Al-goethite were conducted under different geologic conditions. The batch experiments showed that S. epidermidis significantly enhanced the adsorption rates of U(VI) at pH < 9.0 due to the additional metal binding sites. The maximum adsorption capacities of U(VI) on Al-goethite and Al-goethite +S. epidermidis at pH 4.0 and 310 K were calculated from Langmuir equation to be 13.16 and 47.86 mg/g, respectively. The decreased adsorption of U(VI) on Al-goethite + S. epidermidis at high carbonate and pH conditions were primarily driven by the electrostatic repulsion between negatively charged U(VI)-carbonate complexes and the negatively charged adsorbents. According to XPS analysis, the adsorbed U(VI) can be reduced to U(IV) by S. epidermidis, whereas inhibited reduction of U(VI) on Al-goethite + S. epidermidis at high pH could be attributed to the complexation of structural Fe(111) with the oxygen-containing functional groups of S. epidermidis. FT-IR analysis further demonstrated that the bonding of structural Fe(III) with functional groups (e.g., carboxyl and phosphate groups) of S. epidermidis. These results herein are important to understand the fate and transport of U(VI) on the mineral-bacteria ternary systems in the near-surface environment.