Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Hernandez, Rafael

Committee Member

George, Clifford E.

Committee Member

Zappi, Mark E.

Committee Member

French, W. Todd

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Chemical Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Dave C. Swalm School of Chemical Engineering


In this research, the adsorptive capacities of kenaf in the forms of chopped whole stalk, chopped core, and bast materials were evaluated for the removal of lead, zinc, and toluene from contaminated synthetic waste streams using traditional adsorption isotherm techniques. The effect of surface oxidation using ozone was observed with respect to the adsorption of metals. Hydraulic conductivity experiments were conducted to evaluate the head loss associated with packing a column with kenaf fibers and to determine the suitability of its use in dynamic packed column systems. B.E.T. surface areas were determined as well. Under increasingly stringent regulatory requirements, even low level organic and inorganic contamination (under 100 ppm) in surface and ground waters must be treated. This study is part of an ongoing multi-year research effort aiming to develop a kenaf-based biosorptive process to improve treatment of contaminated aqueous streams at reduced costs and technical complexity.