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Adsorption mechanism of different organic chemicals on fluorinated carbon nanotubes

Li, Hao, Zheng, Nan, Liang, Ni, Zhang, Di, Wu, Min, Pan, Bo
Chemosphere 2016 v.154 pp. 258-265
polytetrafluoroethylene, sulfamethoxazole, bisphenol A, coatings, phenanthrenes, surface area, carbon nanotubes, carbon, scanning electron microscopy, hysteresis, electrostatic interactions, butterflies, norfloxacin, transmission electron microscopy, heat production, ofloxacin, desorption, adsorption
Multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MC) were fluorinated by a solid-phase reaction method using polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). The surface alteration of carbon nanotubes after fluorination (MC-F) was confirmed based on surface elemental analysis, TEM and SEM. The incorporation of F on MC surface was discussed as F incorporation on carbon defects, replacement of carboxyl groups, as well as surface coating of PTFE. The adsorption performance and mechanisms of MC-F for five kinds of representative organic compounds: sulfamethoxazole (SMX), ofloxacin (OFL), norfloxacin (NOR), bisphenol a (BPA) and phenanthrene (PHE) were investigated. Although BET-N2 surface area of the investigated CNTs decreased after fluorination, the adsorption of all five chemicals increased. Because of the glassification of MC-F surface coating during BET-N2 surface area measurement, the accessible surface area of MC-F was underestimated. Desorption hysteresis was generally observed in all the sorption systems in this study, and the desorption hysteresis of MC-F were stronger than the pristine CNTs. The enhanced adsorption of MC-F may be attributed the pores generated on the coated PTFE and the dispersed CNT aggregates due to the increased electrostatic repulsion after fluorination. The rearrangement of the bundles or diffusion of the adsorbates in MC-F inner pores were the likely reason for the strong desorption hysteresis of MC-F. The butterfly structure of BPA resulted in its high sorption and strong desorption hysteresis. The exothermic sorption character of OFL on CNTs resulted in its strong desorption hysteresis.