UNAIR scientists study heavy metal removal with tofu industry solid waste

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Illustration by Feri Fenoria

UNAIR NEWS – Dr. Handoko Darmokoesoemo, Drs., DEA., and his team conducted a research on “Utilization of Tofu Industry Solid Waste as Potential Adsorbent” and it passed for Q4 international journal publication.

Regarding the use of solid waste, Handoko explained that heavy metal waste treatment in modern era generally uses synthetic adsorbents which have high effectiveness and selectivity for heavy metal ions. However, he continued, synthetic adsorbents are very expensive that demands high operational costs.

“So cheaper and also effective alternative adsorbents are needed for adsorption various types of mixed heavy metal ions,” he explained.

One of the cheap and easy alternative adsorbents, explained Handoko, is an adsorbent comes from tofu industry solid waste. Tofu, he said, contains a protein composed of amino acids that can be used as adsorbents for heavy metal ions.

“To increase the adsorption power, mechanical strength, and resistance to bacterial attack from tofu solid waste, immobilization is carried out using silica. As an immobilator, silica can also be applied in a continuous flow column, “he said.

Furthermore, Handoko also explained that the aim of the research he and his team was doing was to determine the removal efficiency of Ni (II) based on the optimum pH and pH variations by batch method, adsorbent height variation, and flow rate in the continuous flow column. The study, he continued, also aimed to characterize and identify absorbent functional groups using FTIR analysis.

“From the results of this study it was found that tofu waste immobilized by silica is a good, effective and inexpensive adsorbent for the removal of heavy metal ions of Ni and other heavy metal ions,” he concluded.

Author: Nuri Hermawan

Editor: Khefti Al Mawalia



Handoko Darmokoesoemo, Eko Prasetyo Kuncoro, Ganden Supriyanto, Wulan Manuhara, dan P. D. A. Nasution, The Utilization of Solid Waste of Tofu Industry Immobilized by Silica as Adsorbent in Ni (II) Adsorption in Continuous Flow Column, Polution Research Journal 38 (March Suppl. Issue), 2019. Copyright © EM International, ISSN 0257-8050

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