Polysaccharide-based (nano) materials for Cr (VI) removal
Chromium is a potentially poisonous and carcinogenic species, which originates from human activities and various industries such as leather, steel, iron, and electroplating industries. Chromium is present in various oxidation states, among which hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) is highly toxic as a natural contaminant. Therefore, chromium, particularly Cr(VI), must be eliminated from the environment, soil, and water to overcome significant problems due to its accumulation in the environment. There are different approaches such as adsorption, ion exchange, photocatalytic reduction, etc. for removing Cr(VI) from the environment. By converting Cr(VI) to Cr(III), its toxicity is reduced. Cr(III) is essential for the human diet, even in small amounts. Today, biopolymers such as alginate, cellulose, gum, pectin, starch, chitin, and chitosan have received much attention for the removal of environmental pollutants. Biopolymers, particularly polysaccharides, are very useful compounds due to their OH and NH2 functional groups and some advantages such as biodegradability, biocompatibility, and accessibility. Therefore, they can be widely applied in catalytic applications and as efficient adsorbents for the removal of toxic compounds from the environment. This review briefly investigates the application of polysaccharide-based (nano)materials for efficient Cr(VI) removal from the environment using adsorption/reduction, photocatalytic, and chemical reduction mechanisms.