Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Removing heavy metals from water with MOFs

14.03.2018

An estimated 1 billion people do not have access to clean drinking water, a problem expected to worsen with climate change, according to the World Health Organization. In addition, higher energy needs and increased use of heavy metals in industrial processes have increased human exposure to these toxic materials from drinking water in recent decades. Researchers now report in ACS Central Science a new material that can remove heavy metals and provide clean drinking water in seconds.

There are many sources of exposure to toxic heavy metals. Lead, in particular, has been used in paints, ceramic glazes, jewelry, toys and in pipes. Current commercial methods to remove heavy metals including lead from municipal drinking water can be expensive in terms of money and energy and are inefficient.


A metal organic framework can remove lead from water samples, getting them to EPA-approved levels in seconds.

Credit: American Chemical Society

In addition, some current approaches either are single-use, are difficult to regenerate or can produce significant toxic waste as a side product. Wendy L. Queen and colleagues sought to attack this issue with materials called metal organic frameworks (MOFs) that are networks of organic chemical 'struts' with metal nodes known to pull things like water and gases from air.

That ability, plus the large surface area and chemical tunability of MOFs make them a promising material to remove heavy metals selectively from water.

The researchers created a water-stable MOF/polymer composite with cheap, environmentally and biologically friendly materials and tested its ability to remove heavy metals from water. It had one of the highest reported removal capacities to date, removing over 1.6 times its own weight of mercury and 40 percent of its weight in lead. The researchers tested the MOFs in solutions with lead levels similar to those found in contaminated water samples from Flint, Michigan.

They found that the material can rapidly reduce lead concentrations to 2 parts per billion, which is the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency limit for drinkable levels. Further, the authors removed lead from various real-world water samples from the Rhone River, the Mediterranean Sea and a wastewater treatment plant in Switzerland. The researchers also demonstrated how the material could be regenerated easily without toxic products. The authors say they are now pursuing using other specially designed MOFs to remove other trace contaminants in water.

###

The authors acknowledge funding from the Swiss National Science Foundation, the German Research Foundation, the Department of Energy and the Swiss National Supercomputing Center.

This paper will be freely available on Wednesday, March 14, at 8 a.m. ET at https://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acscentsci.7b00605

The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With nearly 157,000 members, ACS is the world's largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. ACS does not conduct research, but publishes and publicizes peer-reviewed scientific studies. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

To automatically receive news releases from the American Chemical Society, contact newsroom@acs.org.

Follow us: Twitter | Facebook

Katie Cottingham | EurekAlert!

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht Epoxy compound gets a graphene bump
14.11.2018 | Rice University

nachricht Automated adhesive film placement and stringer integration for aircraft manufacture
15.11.2018 | Fraunhofer IFAM

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: UNH scientists help provide first-ever views of elusive energy explosion

Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have captured a difficult-to-view singular event involving "magnetic reconnection"--the process by which sparse particles and energy around Earth collide producing a quick but mighty explosion--in the Earth's magnetotail, the magnetic environment that trails behind the planet.

Magnetic reconnection has remained a bit of a mystery to scientists. They know it exists and have documented the effects that the energy explosions can...

Im Focus: A Chip with Blood Vessels

Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.

Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...

Im Focus: A Leap Into Quantum Technology

Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.

In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...

Im Focus: Research icebreaker Polarstern begins the Antarctic season

What does it look like below the ice shelf of the calved massive iceberg A68?

On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.

Im Focus: Penn engineers develop ultrathin, ultralight 'nanocardboard'

When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure

Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

“3rd Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP 2018” Attracts International Experts and Users

09.11.2018 | Event News

On the brain’s ability to find the right direction

06.11.2018 | Event News

European Space Talks: Weltraumschrott – eine Gefahr für die Gesellschaft?

23.10.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Purdue cancer identity technology makes it easier to find a tumor's 'address'

16.11.2018 | Health and Medicine

Good preparation is half the digestion

16.11.2018 | Life Sciences

Microscope measures muscle weakness

16.11.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>