Activated carbon has been known since ancient India and Egypt for its powerful purification abilities. Introduced to the Western world through the European sugar refineries of the 19th century, activated carbon today is used in applications as diverse as air filtration, pharmaceutical processing, and even medical cloths. It can be made from any raw material that is naturally high in carbon, including coconut shells. Here is what you should know.
What Is Activated Carbon?
Activated carbon has a tremendous surface area relative to its size and a submicroscopic porous network. Through the process of adsorption, it attracts and bonds with a vast array of organic and inorganic compounds along its surface, creating a sort of film. Though it does not bond well with compounds such as alcohol or heavy metals, activated carbon can be impregnated with various chemicals to improve its effectiveness against targeted compounds. Why Choose Coconut Shell Activated Carbon?
Each raw material creates a porous network with uniquely sized pores. Activated carbon made from coconut shell is ideal for water filtration, as its tiny micropores match the size of most water-based contaminants.
In addition, coconuts are a renewable resource. A coconut tree can live for 100 years, and it will continue to produce coconuts until approximately 70 years of age. A mature coconut tree can produce up to 200 coconuts per year, and it is possible to get three or even four harvests per year from each tree. How Is Activated Carbon Made from Coconut Shells?
The naturally carbon-rich shells are slowly heated to a very high temperature in a low-oxygen environment. This removes water and impurities without allowing the shells to burn. The resulting material, known as char, is activated through a variety of chemical and/or physical processes. These activation processes vastly expand the surface area and create the porous network.
The activated carbon is then formed into the desired type: powdered, granular, or extruded. Powdered activated carbon consists of particles fine enough to pass through an 80 mesh sieve. Granular particles are a bit larger, and are available in varying sizes. Extruded activated carbon is made by mixing granular activated carbon with a binder and pushing it through a pellet machine. Each type is uniquely suited to specific applications. The activated carbon is then impregnated with one or more chemicals if desired. Ready to Get Started?
If you need activated carbon, along with expert guidance on exactly which product to choose and how to use it effectively, please contact Oxbow Activated Carbon today to learn how we can help.