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The present study aims to evaluate the use of chicken feather waste (CFW) as an absorbent for the removal of crude oil from crude oil polluted water (CPW) in comparison with commercial activated carbon (CAC) ) in Nigeria. Oil pollution, can be as a result of natural disaster like earthquake, volcanic eruption, hurricane etc., or as a result of man’s interference for example terrorism, oil bunkering, tanker and oil rig accidents. CAC have been use as adsorbent for crude oil removal from the water environment but very expensive, hence the need to develop cheaper and environment friendly adsorbents from some agricultural waste which could constitute nuisance in the environment. The pulverized chicken feathers were characterized using Rutherford Backscattering Spectrometer (RBS) and Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) for elemental composition and the determination of surface morphology, respectively. The agricultural wastes used for this study was chicken feathers. The CFW was sourced from a local market at Ile-Ife, Osun State Nigeria, while commercial activated carbon was purchased from Uche-El Water Limited Company. The pulverized CFW was characterized using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) and Particle-induced X-ray Emission (PIXE). Elemental composition of the CFW showed the presence of Na, Mg, Al, P, K, Ca, Ti, Cr, Mn, Fe, Cu, Zn, Sr, Zr, Cd, Sn, Pb and Si within the range 12.8 - 22566.3 ppm with agglomeration of particle. The results of the scanning electron microscope clearly showed the surface texture and morphological characteristics of CFW. The efficiencies of adsorption increased with increasing initial concentration for the two adsorbents except initial concentration of 20/30 which decreased in the case of CAC. The adsorption efficiencies for all the initial concentrations for the adsorbents is significantly different (F=16.114; P=0.000) at confidence interval of 0.05. CFW showed greater adsorption efficiency of 99.95%, followed by CAC which showed an adsorption potential of 95.08% (P=0.577 > C.I=0.05). The adsorption efficiencies obtained for the chicken feather compare very well with the activated carbon and even better as the dosages of the chicken feather increased. The result of the study shows that chicken feathers is an efficient sorbent for the mopping of crude oil spill in water.
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