Comprehensive evaluation of the removal mechanism of carbamazepine and ibuprofen by metal organic framework

Byung Moon Jun, Jiyong Heo, Chang Min Park, Yeomin Yoon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Scopus citations


Pharmaceutical products (PhACs) in water sources are considered to be a severe environmental issue. To mitigate this issue, we used a metal-organic framework (MOF) as an adsorbent to remove selected PhACs (i.e., carbamazepine (CBM) and ibuprofen (IBP)). This work was carried out to characterize the MOF, then confirm its feasibility for removing the selected PhACs. In particular, based on practical considerations, we investigated the effects of various water quality conditions, such as solution temperature, pH, ionic strength/background ions, and humic acid. MOF exhibited better removal rates than commercial powder activated carbon (PAC), considering pseudo-second order kinetic model. We clarified the competitive PhACs adsorption mechanisms based on the results obtained under various water quality conditions and found that hydrophobic interactions were the most important factors for both adsorbates. To confirm the practicality of MOF adsorption, we carried out regeneration tests with four adsorption and desorption cycles using acetone as a cleaning solution. Furthermore, to support the results of our regeneration tests, we characterized the MOF samples before and after adsorbate exposure using Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. Overall, MOF can be used in practical applications as efficient adsorbents to remove PhACs from water sources.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)527-537
Number of pages11
StatePublished - Nov 2019


  • Adsorption
  • Mechanism
  • Metal-organic framework
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Water treatment


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