Comparison of Natural and Synthetic Sorbents’ Efficiency at Oil Spill Removal

Miroslav Mojžiš, Tatiana Bubeníková, Martin Zachar, Danica Kačíková, Jaroslava Štefková


The spill of crude oil products into the environment has a negative impact on the ecosystem. Sorption materials are utilized as the means of their elimination. The sorption capacity of selected organic and inorganic natural sorbents, such as needles (Larix decidua, Abies alba, and Pinus sylvestris), sawdust from logging (Fagus sylvatica, Picea abies), leaf residues (Fagus sylvatica), moss (Ceratodon purpureus), soil, and synthetic sorbents Absodan Plus, expanded perlite, Eco-dry plus, and Reo Amos were all tested according to the standard ASTM F726 (2012). The natural sorbents were tested at various moisture contents (wet, air-dry, and dry) ranging from 0 to 82%. The pollutant used in the experiment was the low-viscosity engine oil 10W 40. The best sorption capacity among the wet sorbents was achieved with larch needles (11.1 g/g). Moss exhibited the best sorption capacity (25.2 g/g) among the air-dry sorbents. Regarding air-dry sorbents, larch needles, spruce sawdust, and beech sawdust showed the best results. When further dried, their sorption capacity decreased. Soil was the least efficient natural sorbent with a sorption capacity that ranged from 0.45 to 3.82 g/g. The best sorption capacity of 11.5 g/g among the synthetic sorbents was in Reo Amos. The sorption capacity of natural and synthetic substances was comparable.


Natural sorbents; Synthetic sorbents; Oil spills; Sorption capacity

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