Resulting from the combination of water treatment investigations with the latest in material science, a new type of nanomaterial called nanostructured silica has been found to fulfil the requisites necessary for these applications.
With its large surface area and regular pores, it is an ideal material that after a functionalization process that links to its surface diverse organic ligands has the capability of being able to extract heavy metals from wastewaters. This capacity also allows its use as a high sensitivity detection tool for these toxic metals, and considering that the contamination levels permitted in drinking water are increasingly restrictive; functionalized silica offers additional benefits over other water treatment methods.
The design of this nanostructured functionalized silica is based on the emulation on the material of the reaction that heavy metals have with some biomolecules in living cells. Therefore a good understanding of the reaction that bonds such metals to particular functional groups on living cells is of great use to determine the best functional groups to be used on the surface of the nanostructured material; for example, it has been detected that heavy metals interact mainly with functional groups containing oxygen, nitrogen and sulphur.
Following the same line of thinking, the researchers from the URJC, managed by Doctor Isabel Sierra, have achieved a great improvement in heavy metal absorption by creating new materials using different types of silica such as MCM-41 and HMS and modified them with 5-mercapto-1-methylthiazole making them capable of collecting lead and zinc. Their study has also demonstrated that the prepared materials are capable of several cycles of absorption/desorption. With the added benefit that the retained materials can be recovered and then reused, and this has important economical benefits for industry and society.
This investigation has been published on the latest releases of Journal of Separation Science and Journal of Colloid Interface Science
Gabinete de prensa | alfa
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Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
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In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
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