Absolute and Relative Positioning of Natural Organic Matter Acid–Base Potentiometric Titration Curves: Implications for the Evaluation of the Density of Charged Reactive Sites - Université de Lorraine Access content directly
Journal Articles Environmental Science and Technology Year : 2022

Absolute and Relative Positioning of Natural Organic Matter Acid–Base Potentiometric Titration Curves: Implications for the Evaluation of the Density of Charged Reactive Sites

Marawit Tesfa
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Remi Marsac
Aline Dia

Abstract

Potentiometric acid–base titration curves collected on humic (nano)particles as a function of pH and salt concentration reflect the electrostatics of the particles and the amount of chemical charges (Q) they carry. In turn, the interpretation of titration data helps quantify their reactivity toward metals provided that both intrinsic chemical and nonspecific electrostatic contributions to proton binding are correctly unraveled. Establishing a titration curve requires several steps, i.e., blank subtraction, relative curve positioning with respect to the electrolyte concentration, and absolute curve positioning achieved by the estimation of particle charge Q0 at low pH. Failure to properly establish each step may lead to the misevaluation of nanoparticle charging behavior. Here, we report (i) a simple procedure to measure and position titration curves for humic substances (HS) versus salt concentration and (ii) an original approach for absolute curve positioning upon the exploitation of proton affinity spectra. The latter do not depend on Q0 and they thus constrain the titration data analysis using the soft Poisson–Boltzmann-based titration (SPBT) formalism for nanoparticles in the thick electric double-layer regime. We illustrate the benefits of our approach by analyzing titration measurements for a large range of humic nanoparticles and by comparing the outcome with results from the literature.
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Dates and versions

hal-03704908 , version 1 (26-06-2022)

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Marawit Tesfa, Jerome F.L. Duval, Remi Marsac, Aline Dia, José-Paulo F Pinheiro. Absolute and Relative Positioning of Natural Organic Matter Acid–Base Potentiometric Titration Curves: Implications for the Evaluation of the Density of Charged Reactive Sites. Environmental Science and Technology, 2022, 56 (14), pp.10494-10503. ⟨10.1021/acs.est.2c00828⟩. ⟨hal-03704908⟩
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