The ability of ground tire rubber to sorb BTEX compounds from groundwater was examined. The current study consisted of running both batch and packed bed column tests to determine the sorption capacity, the flow through utilization efficiency and the reversibility of BTEX sorption to ground tire rubber. Sorption tests for an equilibrium concentration of the contaminant in solution of 10 mg/L showed that the adsorption capacity of ground tire rubber based on a percentage of the adsorption capacity of activated carbon is: 5% for benzene, 4% for toluene, 4% for ethylbenzene, and 8% for p-xylene. Column tests produced utilization efficiencies for ground tire rubber of 32% to 61% when in contact with the contaminant for 36 minutes. Sorption tests indicate no measurable reduction in sorption capacity after 8 consecutive sorption/desorption tests. Possible future uses of ground rubber as a sorption media could include the use of ground rubber as an aggregate in slurry cut-off walls, or as a sorption media in in-situ reactive permeable barriers.
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