Author(s): ElSafty SA, Shahat A, Awual MR
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Abstract Growing public awareness on the potential risk to humans of toxic chemicals in the environment has generated demand for new and improved methods for toxicity assessment and removal, rational means for health risk estimation. With the aim of controlling nanoscale adsorbents for functionality in molecular sieving of organic pollutants, we fabricated cubic Im3m mesocages with uniform entrance and large cavity pores of aluminosilicates as highly promising candidates for the colorimetric monitoring of organic dyes in an aqueous solution. However, a feasible control over engineering of three-dimensional (3D) mesopore cage structures with uniform entrance (~5 nm) and large cavity (~10 nm) allowed the development of nanoadsorbent membranes as a powerful tool for large-quantity and high-speed (in minutes) adsorption/removal of bulk molecules such as organic dyes. Incorporation of high aluminum contents (Si/Al=1) into 3D cubic Im3m cage mesoporous silica monoliths resulted in small, easy-to-use optical adsorbent strips. In such adsorption systems, natural surfaces of active acid sites of aluminosilicate strips strongly induced both physical adsorption of chemically responsive dyes and intraparticle diffusion into cubic Im3m mesocage monoliths. Results likewise indicated that although aluminosilicate strips with low Si/Al ratios exhibit distortion in pore ordering and decrease in surface area and pore volume, enhancement of both molecular converges and intraparticle diffusion onto the network surfaces and into the pore architectures of adsorbent membranes was achieved. Moreover, 3D mesopore cage adsorbents are reversible, offering potential for multiple adsorption assays. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
This article was published in J Colloid Interface Sci
and referenced in Journal of Environmental & Analytical Toxicology