Glossary



Activated carbon

Activated carbon is produced from peat, wood, coal and nut shells. The preparation is carried out by charring and subsequent treatment with phosphoric acid, zinc chloride for dehydration or by dry distillation. This raw activated carbon is then oxidatively activated, usually with steam.
These activation steps remove tar oils, create fine pore structures and thereby create an active surface area between 300 and 2000 m²/g.
Activated carbon can be regenerated again. This is done by heating to several hundred degrees Celsius, whereby some of the adsorbed compounds (e.g. organic solvents) evaporate or coke.

In water purification, activated carbons are used to remove adsorbable, dissolved ingredients.
Activated carbon is used in municipal wastewater treatment and sometimes referred to as quaternary treatment stage.


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