Spontaneous formation of mesoporous silica films using non-surfactant template, and optimization with Doehlert designs, for adsorbent for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons
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To prepare mesoporous silica thin-films by a simple and environmentally friendly pathway, spontaneous formation of silica thin-films in a sol–gel solution without surfactants was studied. The silica thin-films were prepared by immersing a glass substrate, such as a cylindrical test-tube, into a sol–gel solution containing tetraethoxysilane, water, acetic acid, 2-propanol, and triethylene glycol as a pore-forming agent. The resulting thin-films were transparent. The presence of mesopores was confirmed by field-emission scanning electron microscopy, atomic-force microscopy and nitrogen adsorption–desorption isotherms. The Barrett–Joyner–Halenda plot from the adsorption branch of the isotherms indicated that the pore diameter was 2.6 nm. To illustrate the potential use of the film as an adsorbent, the extraction of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons was conducted using the chemically modified silica thin-film coated on a test-tube. The composition of the sol–gel solution was optimized using experimental design, i.e., Doehlert design, and recovery of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.
KeywordsMesoporous silica Thin-film Non-surfactant template Non-evaporation-induced self-assembly Adsorbents Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons
The authors thank Professor T. Ono, Mr. T. Wakasugi, and Ms. N. Anbo for their help with AFM. This work was partly supported by Research for Promoting Technological Seeds (No. 02-004), funded by the Japan Science and Technology Agency.
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