Use of hop (Humulus lupulus) agricultural by-products for the reduction of aqueous lead(II) environmental health hazards

Publication Date


Publication Name

Journal of Hazardous Materials

Document Type



The agricultural by-products of the hop plant (Humulus lupulus L.) were investigated to determine their potential for use in the removal of heavy lead(II) ions from contaminated aqueous solutions. Separate batch laboratory experiments were performed to establish the optimal binding pH, time exposures, and capacity of the metal adsorption for lead(II) ions by dried and ground hop leaves and stems biomass. Results from these studies have shown a pH dependent binding trend from pH 2-6, with optimum binding occurring around pH 5.0. Time dependency experiments showed a rapid adsorption of lead(II) ions within the first 5min of contact. Binding capacity experiments demonstrated that 74.2mg of lead(II) were bound per gram of leaf biomass. Similarly overall capacity was seen for the leaves and stems. Desorption of 99% of the bound lead(II) ions was achieved by exposing the metal laden biomass to 0.5M sodium citrate. Further experiments were performed with silica-immobilized hop tissues to determine the lead(II) binding ability under flow conditions. Comparison studies were performed with ion-exchange resins to evaluate the binding ability and to gain further insight into the metal binding mechanism. X-ray absorption spectroscopy experiments were also utilized to gain further insight into the possible lead(II) binding mechanism by the hop plant tissue. Results from these studies indicate that carboxyl ligands are involved in the binding of lead(II) from aqueous solution. These findings show that the use of hop agricultural waste products may be a viable alternative, for the removal and recovery of aqueous lead(II) ions from contaminated waters. © 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.





First Page


Last Page