Solid materials have been developed to remove contaminating metals and organic compounds from aqueous media. The contaminants are removed by passing the aqueous phase through the solid materials which can be in molded, granular, or powder form. The solid materials adsorb the metals and the organics leaving a purified aqueous stream. The materials are sol-gel and or sol-gel and granulated activated carbon (GAC) mixtures. The species-specific adsorption occurs through specific chemical modifications of the solids tailored towards the contaminant(s). The contaminated solid materials can then be disposed of or the contaminant can be removed and the solids recycled.
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.