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Journal of Porous Media
IF: 1.49 5-Year IF: 1.159 SJR: 0.43 SNIP: 0.671 CiteScore™: 1.58

ISSN Print: 1091-028X
ISSN Online: 1934-0508

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Journal of Porous Media

DOI: 10.1615/JPorMedia.2019024612
pages 1001-1014


Andrea Luca Tasca
Department of Chemical and Process Engineering, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G1 1XJ, United Kingdom
Ashleigh J. Fletcher
Department of Chemical and Process Engineering, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G1 1XJ, United Kingdom
Farnaz Ghajeri
Department of Engineering Sciences, Applied Materials Science, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
Fernando Maya Alejandro
Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Sciences, University of the Balearic Islands, Carretera de Valldemossa km 7.5, E-07122 Palma de Mallorca, Illes Balears, Spain
Gemma Turnes Palomino
Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Sciences, University of the Balearic Islands, Carretera de Valldemossa km 7.5, E-07122 Palma de Mallorca, Illes Balears, Spain


The adsorption capacities of a novel amorphous silica and silica xerogels for aromatic compounds were investigated using microcolumn rapid breakthrough tests coupled with sequential injection flow-based automated instrumentation in order to evaluate their operative feasibility under conditions typically used in water treatment facilities. Extraction columns were fabricated using stereolithographic 3D printing. Sorbent reusability was also investigated using automated flow-based techniques. Benzene was selected as the target dissolved organic compound usually present in produced waters from the oil and gas sector, continuously increasing. 3,4-Dichloroaniline (3,4-DCA) was selected as part of the endocrine disrupting chemicals, which are becoming a source of major concern for human and wildlife toxicity. Novel amorphous silicas were synthesized at low temperature and under ambient pressure from a sodium metasilicate precursor and were subjected to postsynthetic methylation. Silica xerogels were prepared via acid catalysis of a sodium metasilicate solution and functionalized with trimethylchlorosilane at low temperature and under ambient pressure. The removal efficiency of the silica xerogels tested was found to be equal to or greater than 22.62 mg/g for benzene at a flow rate of 0.6 mL/min, while the uptake of 3,4-DCA was found to be > 4.63 and > 7.17 mg/g, respectively, at flow rates of 1.8 and 0.6 mL/min.


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