3 years ago

House of Cards Nanostructuring of Graphene Oxide and Montmorillonite Clay for Oil–Water Separation

House of Cards Nanostructuring of Graphene Oxide and Montmorillonite Clay for Oil–Water Separation
Kramer Joseph Lim, Maria Lourdes Dalida, Rigoberto C. Advincula, Chaitanya Danda, Joey Dacula Mangadlao
Noncovalent interactions are ubiquitous in our daily living. Nature employs hydrophobic effects, π–π interactions, hydrogen bonding, van der Waals forces, and electrostatic interactions in many biological processes such as protein folding. In the same manner, scientists exploit this plethora of inherently reversible noncovalent interactions as dials to design robust and smart materials. Electrostatic interaction is particularly interesting due to the simplicity of its concept, i.e., opposite charges attract. However, to our knowledge, the electrostatic interaction between two different 2D nanomaterials has not been investigated in literature. A myriad of natural and synthetic 2D nanomaterials should be explored for what may be an exciting cocktail of synergistic and tunable properties brought about by their charges and physical properties. This contribution highlights an interesting phenomena when organic, negatively charged graphene oxide and inorganic, positively charged montmorillonite (MMT) clay edges are brought into contact. A house-of-cards structure is proposed for two different 2D nanomaterials (graphene oxide and montmorillonite) interacting electrostatically. Such behavior is manifested by a dramatic change in viscosity leading to the formation of a hydrogel, which is later used as a precursor for the fabrication of aerogels. The materials are promising for oil–spill cleanup and oil–water separation.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/mame.201700314

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