Activated carbon is a highly porous carbon having a very large (inner) surface. The production of activated carbon from non-porous carbonaceous raw materials is known as activation. In this process, the reaction of water vapor and carbon dioxide at high temperature (700-900 ° C) forms a high number of pores of various sizes in carbon.
The structure of the remaining carbon skeleton depends on the raw material and determines both the pore size distribution as well as the mechanical strength of the activated carbon. Thus, for example, from a very hard raw material, such as a coconut shell, an extremely hard and abrasion resistant activated carbon is produced.
Silcarbon activated carbons are mainly made from coconut shells, palm kernels, bituminous coal and wood. Each of the indicated raw materials gives the pore structure their own characteristics and is used for various applications.
Adsorption is the process of accumulation of liquid or gaseous substances to a solid surface, in this case the surface of activated carbon. This accumulation is affected by the so-called "Van der Waals” forces. Due to their large internal surface area, activated carbon is an excellent and powerful adsorbent, which binds (mostly organic) substances from the surrounding medium to the activated carbon.
Different forms of activated carbon activated carbon are:
• as a powder: powder activated carbon
• as granules: granular activated carbon (fine, medium and coarse / regular and agglomerated)
• or as a pellet: extruded activated carbon