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Nanocellulose-based magnetic hybrid aerogel for adsorption of heavy metal ions from water

Wei, Jie, Yang, Zhixing, Sun, Yun, Wang, Changkai, Fan, Jilong, Kang, Guoyin, Zhang, Rong, Dong, Xiaoying, Li, Yongfeng
Journal of materials science 2019 v.54 no.8 pp. 6709-6718
adsorption, aerogels, cellulose, chromium, copper, heavy metals, human health, iron oxides, magnetism, metal ions, nanoparticles, pollution, water purification
Heavy metal pollution is one of the most serious environmental problems, posing threats to human health. Here, we developed a magnetic hybrid aerogel by integrating nanocellulose and ferroferric oxide (Fe₃O₄) nanoparticles for effectively adsorbing heavy metal ions from water and realizing controllable recovery under magnetic condition. The magnetic behavior and adsorbing capacity of the hybrid aerogel on removal of heavy metal chromium (Cr)(VI) ion were examined. Results show that the ferroferric oxide nanoparticles physically adsorb the nanocellulose, each of which retains the original composition and structural characteristics. The magnetic hybrid aerogel possesses good ferromagnetic property with saturation magnetization value of 53.69 emu/g, enabling effective and controllable recovery of the aerogel under magnetic condition The adsorption efficiency of the hybrid aerogel on the Cr(VI) ion reaches the highest value of 2.2 mg/g when the mass ratio of the nanocellulose to ferroferric oxide nanoparticle is 1:1. Additionally, the hybrid aerogel presents similar adsorption behavior on plumbum (Pb)(II) and copper (Cu)(II) ions, suggesting extended applications of the hybrid aerogel on removal of heavy metal ions. Such strategy could provide new applications for the abundant nanocellulose resources and could be extended to integrate nanocellulose with other functional nanomaterials into novel hybrid aerogel for water purification.