Superior removal of selenite by periclase during transformation to brucite under high-pH conditions

Keisuke Fukushi*, Shun Miyashita, Takeshi Kasama, Yoshio Takahashi, Shoji Morodome

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


The sorption of selenite (Se(IV)) at trace (sub-ppm) to high concentrations on periclase (MgO) under high-pH conditions (pH > 10) was examined by macroscopic sorption experiments and nanoscale solid phase analyses via transmission electron microscopy and X-ray absorption spectroscopy. The maximum distribution coefficient (Kd) of Se(IV) on MgO was 100 L/g, the highest among any reported mineral sorbents at pH > 10. Since MgO is a metastable phase under ambient conditions, it transforms instantaneously to brucite (Mg(OH)2) in solution. Se(IV) was preferentially and homogeneously distributed onto the newly formed Mg(OH)2. The Mg(OH)formed thin flake-like platelets, which appeared to be aggregates of nanoscale Mg(OH)2 particles, the primary alteration product of MgO. The chemical form of Se(VI) adsorbed on nanoscale particles was outer-sphere complexes. Therefore, the outer-spherically adsorbed Se(IV) was occluded into the large flake-like Mg(OH)2 particles, resulting in its effective isolation from the solution.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Pages (from-to)370-380
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Periclase
  • Selenite
  • Transformation
  • Brucite
  • High pH condition


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