Biosorption of monovalent ions Na+and K+, by deactivated protonated yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) at controlled pH, was compared with biosorption of divalent ions Ca2+and Mg2+to help to understand the underlying binding mechanisms. The adsorption for monovalent ions was accompanied by H+release. Divalent ions were sorbed by proton displacement, and also an additional mode not accompanied by release of H+. The sorption uptake of both monovalent and divalent metal ions increased with pH in the range 3-7 peaking at 6.75. Equilibrium sorption isotherms at pH = 6.75 showed that the total maximum biosorptive capacity for metal ions decreased in the following order: Ca > Mg > Na ≥ K. © 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
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