Matching Items (6)

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Synthesis, characterizations and applications of mesoporous carbon composites

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This dissertation provides a fundamental understanding of the properties of mesoporous carbon based materials and the utilization of those properties into different applications such as electrodes materials for super capacitors,

This dissertation provides a fundamental understanding of the properties of mesoporous carbon based materials and the utilization of those properties into different applications such as electrodes materials for super capacitors, adsorbents for water treatments and biosensors. The thickness of mesoporous carbon films on Si substrates are measured by Ellipsometry method and pore size distribution has been calculated by Kelvin equation based on toluene adsorption and desorption isotherms monitored by Ellipsometer. The addition of organometallics cobalt and vanalyl acetylacetonate in the synthesis precursor leads to the metal oxides in the carbon framework, which largely decreased the shrink of the framework during carbonization, resulting in an increase in the average pore size. In addition to the structural changes, the introduction of metal oxides into mesoporous carbon framework greatly enhances the electrochemical performance as a result of their pseudocapacitance. Also, after the addition of Co into the framework, the contraction of mesoporous powders decreased significantly and the capacitance increased prominently because of the solidification function of CoO nanoparticles. When carbon-cobalt composites are used as adsorbent, the adsorption capacity of dye pollutant in water is remarkably higher (90 mg/g) after adding Co than the mesoporous carbon powder (2 mg/g). Furthermore, the surface area and pore size of mesoporous composites can be greatly increased by addition of tetraethyl orthosilicate into the precursor with subsequent etching, which leads to a dramatic increase in the adsorption capacity from 90 mg/g up to 1151 mg/g. When used as electrode materials for amperometric biosensors, mesoporous carbons showed good sensitivity, selectivity and stability. And fluorine-free and low-cost poly (methacrylate)s have been developed as binders for screen printed biosensors. With using only 5wt% of poly (hydroxybutyl methacrylate), the glucose sensor maintained mechanical integrity and exhibited excellent sensitivity on detecting glucose level in whole rabbit blood. Furthermore, extremely high surface area mesoporous carbons have been synthesized by introducing inorganic Si precursor during self-assembly, which effectively determined norepinephrine at very low concentrations.

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  • 2012

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Evaluation of nanoporous carbon thin films for drug loading and controlled release

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Mesoporous materials that possess large surface area, tunable pore size, and ordered structures are attractive features for many applications such as adsorption, protein separation, enzyme encapsulation and drug delivery as

Mesoporous materials that possess large surface area, tunable pore size, and ordered structures are attractive features for many applications such as adsorption, protein separation, enzyme encapsulation and drug delivery as these materials can be tailored to host different guest molecules. Films provide a model system to understand how the pore orientation impacts the potential for loading and release of selectively sized molecules. This research work aims to develop structure-property relationships to understand how pore size, geometry, and surface hydrophobicity influence the loading and release of drug molecules. In this study, the pore size is systematically varied by incorporating pore-swelling agent of polystyrene oligomers (hPS) to soft templated mesoporous carbon films fabricated by cooperative assembly of poly(styrene-block-ethylene oxide) (SEO) with phenolic resin. To examine the impact of morphology, different compositions of amphiphilic triblock copolymer templates, poly(ethylene oxide)-block-poly(propylene oxide)-block-poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO-PPO-PEO), are used to form two-dimensional hexagonal and cubic mesostructures. Lastly, the carbonization temperature provides a handle to tune the hydrophobicity of the film. These mesoporous films are then utilized to understand the uptake and release of a model drug Mitoxantrone dihydrochloride from nanostructured materials. The largest pore size (6nm) mesoporous carbon based on SEO exhibits the largest uptake (3.5μg/cm2); this is attributed to presence of larger internal volume compared to the other two films. In terms of release, a controlled response is observed for all films with the highest release for the 2nm cubic film (1.45 μg/cm2) after 15 days, but this is only 56 % of the drug loaded. Additionally, the surface hydrophobicity impacts the fraction of drug release with a decrease from 78% to 43%, as the films become more hydrophobic when carbonized at higher temperatures. This work provides a model system to understand how pore morphology, size and chemistry influence the drug loading and release for potential implant applications.

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  • 2011

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Synthesis of mesoporous metal oxide materials

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Nanoporous crystalline oxides with high porosity and large surface areas are promising in catalysis, clean energy technologies and environmental applications all which require efficient chemical reactions at solid-solid, solid-liquid, and/or

Nanoporous crystalline oxides with high porosity and large surface areas are promising in catalysis, clean energy technologies and environmental applications all which require efficient chemical reactions at solid-solid, solid-liquid, and/or solid-gas interfaces. Achieving the balance between open porosity and structural stability is an ongoing challenge when synthesizing such porous materials. Increasing porosity while maintaining an open porous network usually comes at the cost of fragility, as seen for example in ultra low density, highly random porous aerogels. It has become increasingly important to develop synthetic techniques that produce materials with these desired properties while utilizing low cost precursors and increasing their structural strength. Based on non-alkoxide sol-gel chemistry, two novel synthetic methods for nanoporous metal oxides have been developed. The first is a high temperature combustion method that utilizes biorenewable oil, affording gamma alumina (Al2O3) with a surface area over 300 cm3/g and porosity over 80% and controllable pore sizes (average pore width 8 to 20 nm). The calcined crystalline products exhibit an aerogel-like textural mesoporosity. To demonstrate the versatility of the new method, it was used to synthesize highly porous amorphous silica (SiO2) which exhibited increased mechanical robustness while achieving a surface area of 960 m2/g and porosity of 85%. The second method utilizes sequential gelation of inorganic and organic precursors forming an interpenetrating inorganic/organic gel network. The method affords yttria-stabilized zirconia with surface area over 90 cm3/g and porosity over 60% and controllable pore sizes (average pore width 6 to 12 nm). X-ray diffraction, gas sorption analysis, Raman spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and electron microscopy were all used to characterize the structure, morphology, and the chemical structure of the newly afforded materials. Both novel methods produce products that show superior pore properties and robustness compared to equivalent commercially available and currently reported materials.

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Date Created
  • 2012

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Nanoporous conducting materials

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Nanoporous electrically conducting materials can be prepared with high specific pore volumes and surface areas which make them well-suited for a wide variety of technologies including separation, catalysis and owing

Nanoporous electrically conducting materials can be prepared with high specific pore volumes and surface areas which make them well-suited for a wide variety of technologies including separation, catalysis and owing to their conductivity, energy related applications like solar cells, batteries and capacitors. General synthetic methods for nanoporous conducting materials that exhibit fine property control as well as facility and efficiency in their implementation continue to be highly sought after. Here, general methods for the synthesis of nanoporous conducting materials and their characterization are presented. Antimony-doped tin oxide (ATO), a transparent conducting oxide (TCO), and nanoporous conducting carbon can be prepared through the step-wise synthesis of interpenetrating inorganic/organic networks using well-established sol-gel methodology. The one-pot method produces an inorganic gel first that encompasses a solution of organic precursors. The surface of the inorganic gel subsequently catalyzes the formation of an organic gel network that interpenetrates throughout the inorganic gel network. These mutually supporting gel networks strengthen one another and allow for the use of evaporative drying methods and heat treatments that would usually destroy the porosity of an unsupported gel network. The composite gel is then selectively treated to either remove the organic network to provide a porous inorganic network, as is the case for antimony-doped tin oxide, or the inorganic network can be removed to generate a porous carbon material. The method exhibits flexibility in that the pore structure of the final porous material can be modified through the variation of the synthetic conditions. Additionally, porous carbons of hierarchical pore size distributions can be prepared by using wet alumina gel as a template dispersion medium and as a template itself. Alumina gels exhibit thixotropy, which is the ability of a solid to be sheared to a liquid state and upon removal of the shear force, return to a solid gel state. Alumina gels were prepared and blended with monomer solutions and sacrificial template particles to produce wet gel composites. These composites could then be treated to remove the alumina and template particles to generate hierarchically porous carbon.

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  • 2012

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Synthesis and characterization of ordered mesoporous silica with controlled macroscopic morphology for membrane applications

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Ordered mesoporous materials have tunable pore sizes between 2 and 50 nm and are characterized by ordered pore structures and high surface areas (~1000 m2/g). This makes them particularly favorable

Ordered mesoporous materials have tunable pore sizes between 2 and 50 nm and are characterized by ordered pore structures and high surface areas (~1000 m2/g). This makes them particularly favorable for a number of membrane applications such as protein separation, polymer extrusion, nanowire fabrication and membrane reactors. These membranes can be fabricated as top-layers on macroporous supports or as embedded membranes in a dense matrix. The first part of the work deals with the hydrothermal synthesis and water-vapor/oxygen separation properties of supported MCM-48 and a new Al-MCM-48 type membrane for potential use in air conditioning systems. Knudsen-type permeation is observed in these membranes. The combined effect of capillary condensation and the aluminosilicate matrix resulted in the highest separation factor (142) in Al-MCM-48 membranes, with a water vapor permeance of 6×10-8mol/m2Pas. The second part focuses on synthesis of embedded mesoporous silica membranes with helically ordered pores by a novel Counter Diffusion Self-Assembly (CDSA) method. This method is an extension of the interfacial synthesis method for fiber synthesis using tetrabutylorthosilicate (TBOS) and cetyltrimethylammonium bromide (CTAB) as the silica source and surfactant respectively. The initial part of this study determined the effect of TBOS height and humidity on fiber formation. From this study, the range of TBOS heights for best microscopic and macroscopic ordering were established. Next, the CDSA method was used to successfully synthesize membranes, which were characterized to have good support plugging and an ordered pore structure. Factors that influence membrane synthesis and plug microstructure were determined. SEM studies revealed the presence of gaps between the plugs and support pores, which occur due to shrinking of the plug on drying. Development of a novel liquid deposition method to seal these defects constituted the last part of this work. Post sealing, excess silica was removed by etching with hydrofluoric acid. Membrane quality was evaluated at each step using SEM and gas permeation measurements. After surfactant removal by liquid extraction, the membranes exhibited an O2 permeance of 1.65x10-6mol/m2.Pa.s and He/O2 selectivity of 3.30. The successful synthesis of this membrane is an exciting new development in the area of ordered mesoporous membrane technology.

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Date Created
  • 2011

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Characterization of novel adsorbents for the recovery of alcohol biofuels from aqueous solutions via solid-phase extraction

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Emergent environmental issues, ever-shrinking petroleum reserves, and rising fossil fuel costs continue to spur interest in the development of sustainable biofuels from renewable feed-stocks. Meanwhile, however, the development and viability

Emergent environmental issues, ever-shrinking petroleum reserves, and rising fossil fuel costs continue to spur interest in the development of sustainable biofuels from renewable feed-stocks. Meanwhile, however, the development and viability of biofuel fermentations remain limited by numerous factors such as feedback inhibition and inefficient and generally energy intensive product recovery processes. To circumvent both feedback inhibition and recovery issues, researchers have turned their attention to incorporating energy efficient separation techniques such as adsorption in in situ product recovery (ISPR) approaches. This thesis focused on the characterization of two novel adsorbents for the recovery of alcohol biofuels from model aqueous solutions. First, a hydrophobic silica aerogel was evaluated as a biofuel adsorbent through characterization of equilibrium behavior for conventional second generation biofuels (e.g., ethanol and n-butanol). Longer chain and accordingly more hydrophobic alcohols (i.e., n-butanol and 2-pentanol) were more effectively adsorbed than shorter chain alcohols (i.e., ethanol and i-propanol), suggesting a mechanism of hydrophobic adsorption. Still, the adsorbed alcohol capacity at biologically relevant conditions were low relative to other `model' biofuel adsorbents as a result of poor interfacial contact between the aqueous and sorbent. However, sorbent wettability and adsorption is greatly enhanced at high concentrations of alcohol in the aqueous. Consequently, the sorbent exhibits Type IV adsorption isotherms for all biofuels studied, which results from significant multilayer adsorption at elevated alcohol concentrations in the aqueous. Additionally, sorbent wettability significantly affects the dynamic binding efficiency within a packed adsorption column. Second, mesoporous carbons were evaluated as biofuel adsorbents through characterization of equilibrium and kinetic behavior. Variations in synthetic conditions enabled tuning of specific surface area and pore morphology of adsorbents. The adsorbed alcohol capacity increased with elevated specific surface area of the adsorbents. While their adsorption capacity is comparable to polymeric adsorbents of similar surface area, pore morphology and structure of mesoporous carbons greatly influenced adsorption rates. Multiple cycles of adsorbent regeneration rendered no impact on adsorption equilibrium or kinetics. The high chemical and thermal stability of mesoporous carbons provide potential significant advantages over other commonly examined biofuel adsorbents. Correspondingly, mesoporous carbons should be further studied for biofuel ISPR applications.

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  • 2011