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A Mesoporous Chelating Polymer-Carbon Composite for the Hyper-Efficient Separation of Heavy Metal Ions

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The removal of heavy-metal ions from wastewater is an important objective from a public-health perspective, and chelating agents can be used to achieve this aim. Herein, we report the synthesis of mesoporous carbon as a chelating polymer host using nanoarchitectonics approach. Carboxymethylated polyethyleneimine, a chelating polymer, was incorporated into the mesopore walls of mesoporous carbon to create a polymer-mesoporous-carbon composite. Nitrogen adsorption– desorption experiments and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) were used to illustrate the structural advantages of the composite. Co2+ adsorption by the composite material was examined using cobalt nitrate solutions at pH 3. The study revealed that the Co2+-absorption data are most closely modeled by the Langmuir isotherm. The maximum adsorption capacity, calculated by linear regression, was determined to be about 40 mg-Co/g-composite at pH 3. The composite exhibited about a six-times higher adsorption capacity toward a dilute Co solution (12.5 ppm) than that of the pristine mesoporous carbon. In addition, the composite showed a substantially higher distribution coefficient (Kd = 1.54×105) compared to that (Kd = 2.05×102) of the mesoporous carbon. Overall, we expect that the mesoporous composite, with its large mesopores (~20 nm), will be in high demand for adsorption applications.
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Keywords: Chelating Polymer; Cobalt Ions; Mesoporous Carbon; Nanoarchitectonics; Separation

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Applied Chemical Engineering, Research Center of Eco-Friendly & High Performance Chemical Materials, Korea University of Technology and Education, Cheonan 31253, Korea 2: Decommissioning Waste Management Team, Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute, Daejeon 34057, Korea 3: Department of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, Pusan National University, Jangjeon-dong, Geumjeong-gu, Busan 46241, Korea

Publication date: May 1, 2020

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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