Batch equilibrium sorption experiments were used for screening for cost-effective four types of sludge, which were DWS (drinking water treatment plant sludge), LLS (landfill leachate sludge), ADSS (anaerobically digested sewage sludge), and SS (sewage sludge). SS removed cadmium most efficiently from aqueous solution (0.38 mmol/g), and showed the highest desorption efficiency (26.3%). Only the SS can be fitted by Langmuir isotherm model (r2= 0.996). The FT-IR spectra of SS and cadmium loaded SS indicated that carboxyl groups were major binding sites of cadmium binding sites. In kinetic experiment, it was found that the uptake of the metal by the SS was accompanied with proton release, indicating that the metal binding occurs via an ion exchange as well as by electrostatic interaction between carboxylate groups and cadmium ions. This sorbent may have a potential for use as high-value biosorbent of heavy metals and it deserves further investigations into the details of practical application, for example on the development of desorption methods and on sorption process optimization. © 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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