Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Engineering Management


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

John E. Stubbs, PhD


Granular activated carbon and carbon nanofiber samples were tested as is and electrochemically modified to determine the effect on adsorption. An electrochemical cell was used to modify the carbon samples. The samples were then used in bench bottle tests with 2,4-dinitrotoluene (DNT), brilliant blue (BB) dye, and methylene blue (MB) dye solutions and sampled over time intervals. An ultraviolet–visible spectrophotometer was used to analyze the results of the bottle bench tests. The results indicated that electrochemically modified coal-based carbons’ adsorption were improved 25% over the adsorption of the as is carbon samples prior to modification. The electrochemical modification increased adsorption of contaminants (DNT, BB, and MB) of the three coal-based carbons at two levels of carbon concentration (25 mg and 12.5 mg). The modified carbon nanofiber showed no change in the pilot BB dye adsorption study; therefore, only scanning electron microscope (SEM) images were taken and no further BB and MB dye or DNT studies were pursued. The modified coconut shell carbon adsorption results varied in the initial DNT studies. Further adsorption studies were conducted with coconut-based carbon after electrochemical modification. The results showed that the electrochemical treatment degraded the adsorption of the coconut-based carbon below 50% of the original, as is carbon adsorption. The study further revealed over 7 days after the modification of the coconut carbon, it slowly began to regain its original adsorption performance.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number