Inner-sphere complexation of cations at the rutile-water interface: A concise surface structural interpretation with the CD and MUSIC model

Moira K. Ridley, Tjisse Hiemstra, Willem H. van Riemsdijk, Michael L. Machesky

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Acid-base reactivity and ion-interaction between mineral surfaces and aqueous solutions is most frequently investigated at the macroscopic scale as a function of pH. Experimental data are then rationalized by a variety of surface complexation models. These models are thermodynamically based which in principle does not require a molecular picture. The models are typically calibrated to relatively simple solid-electrolyte solution pairs and may provide poor descriptions of complex multi-component mineral-aqueous solutions, including those found in natural environments. Surface complexation models may be improved by incorporating molecular-scale surface structural information to constrain the modeling efforts. Here, we apply a concise, molecularly-constrained surface complexation model to a diverse suite of surface titration data for rutile and thereby begin to address the complexity of multi-component systems. Primary surface charging curves in NaCl, KCl, and RbCl electrolyte media were fit simultaneously using a charge distribution (CD) and multisite complexation (MUSIC) model [Hiemstra T. and Van Riemsdijk W. H. (1996) A surface structural approach to ion adsorption: the charge distribution (CD) model. J. Colloid Interf. Sci. 179, 488-508], coupled with a Basic Stern layer description of the electric double layer. In addition, data for the specific interaction of Ca2+ and Sr2+ with rutile, in NaCl and RbCl media, were modeled. In recent developments, spectroscopy, quantum calculations, and molecular simulations have shown that electrolyte and divalent cations are principally adsorbed in various inner-sphere configurations on the rutile 1 1 0 surface [Zhang Z., Fenter P., Cheng L., Sturchio N. C., Bedzyk M. J., Předota M., Bandura A., Kubicki J., Lvov S. N., Cummings P. T., Chialvo A. A., Ridley M. K., Bénézeth P., Anovitz L., Palmer D. A., Machesky M. L. and Wesolowski D. J. (2004) Ion adsorption at the rutile-water interface: linking molecular and macroscopic properties. Langmuir 20, 4954-4969]. Our CD modeling results are consistent with these adsorbed configurations provided adsorbed cation charge is allowed to be distributed between the surface (0-plane) and Stern plane (1-plane). Additionally, a complete description of our titration data required inclusion of outer-sphere binding, principally for Cl- which was common to all solutions, but also for Rb+ and K+. These outer-sphere species were treated as point charges positioned at the Stern layer, and hence determined the Stern layer capacitance value. The modeling results demonstrate that a multi-component suite of experimental data can be successfully rationalized within a CD and MUSIC model using a Stern-based description of the EDL. Furthermore, the fitted CD values of the various inner-sphere complexes of the mono- and divalent ions can be linked to the microscopic structure of the surface complexes and other data found by spectroscopy as well as molecular dynamics (MD). For the Na+ ion, the fitted CD value points to the presence of bidenate inner-sphere complexation as suggested by a recent MD study. Moreover, its MD dominance quantitatively agrees with the CD model prediction. For Rb+, the presence of a tetradentate complex, as found by spectroscopy, agreed well with the fitted CD and its predicted presence was quantitatively in very good agreement with the amount found by spectroscopy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1841-1856
Number of pages16
JournalGeochimica et Cosmochimica Acta
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 1 2009


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