Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 53, Issue 13, pp 9429–9448 | Cite as

Synthesis, characterization and evaluation of resin-based carbon spheres modified by oxygen functional groups for gaseous elemental mercury capture

  • Changming Zhang
  • Wen Song
  • Xiaochao Zhang
  • Rui Li
  • Songjian Zhao
  • Caimei Fan
Chemical routes to materials


A novel resin-based spherical carbon material was successfully prepared by suspension polymerization of alkyl phenol and formaldehyde and steam activation in combination with surface modification by heat treatment with dry air for enhancing Hg0 adsorption. The analysis results demonstrate that the oxidation-modified activated carbon spheres possess better mercury removal performance than untreated sorbents, and the ACS-O300 obtained by oxidation modified at 300 °C is the optimal sorbent at the adsorption temperature range from 25 to 150 °C. The main reason is assigned to the increase of the oxygen functional groups of C=O and C(O)–O–C that play an important role as effective active sites for binding the Hg0, even though the C(O)–O–C predominates in mercury removal performance under higher adsorption temperature. The optimum O2 concentration is 4 vol% at the O2 concentration range from 0 to 8 vol%. SO2 and NO are favorable to the mercury adsorption under 4 vol% O2, while H2O leads to the inhibition of the mercury adsorption. The TPD results suggest that a strong desorption peak at temperature around 235 °C and a weak peak at 324 °C should generate from mercury desorption of C = O and C(O)–O–C, correspondingly. Moreover, the XPS analysis results of the fresh and used sorbent indicates that the C=O and C(O)–O–C serve as strong oxidizer and facilitate electron transfer for converting Hg0 to Hg2+ in the chemisorption process. These results suggest that the obtained resin-based spherical porous carbon (ACS-O300) is promising for Hg0 capture.



This work is financially supported by National Nature Science Foundation of China (Nos. 51002166, 51172251 and 51061130536), National Science Foundation of China for Youths (Nos. 51402324 and 21706179), National Science Foundation of ShanXi for Youths (Nos. 2015021107 and 201701D221037).

Supplementary material

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Supplementary material 1 (PDF 950 kb)


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Chemistry and Chemical EngineeringTaiyuan University of TechnologyTaiyuanPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of Coal Science and Technology of Ministry of EducationTaiyuan University of TechnologyTaiyuanPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.ShanXi XinHua Chemical Co., LtdTaiyuanPeople’s Republic of China
  4. 4.School of Environmental Science and EngineeringShanghai Jiao Tong UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China

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