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Removal of Microplastics from Waters through Agglomeration-Fixation Using Organosilanes—Effects of Polymer Types, Water Composition and Temperature

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Wasser 3.0 gGmbH, Neufeldstr. 17a-19a, 71687 Karlsruhe, Germany
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abcr GmbH, Im Schlehert 10, 76187 Karlsruhe, Germany
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Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Engler-Bunte-Institut (EBI), Chair of Water Chemistry and Water Technology, Engler-Bunte-Ring 9a, 76131 Karlsruhe, Germany
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DVGW Research Laboratories, Water Chemistry and Water Technology, Engler-Bunte-Ring 9a, 76131 Karlsruhe, Germany
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Bing-Jie Ni
Water 2021, 13(5), 675; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13050675
Received: 26 January 2021 / Revised: 22 February 2021 / Accepted: 26 February 2021 / Published: 2 March 2021
Due to the fact, that microplastics are a global environmental problem, new ways for their removal from water, soil and air need to be developed. New materials in combination with easy to implement technologies for microplastic removal come into the focus of scientific studies and engineering, especially for application in water resources. In our comparative case study, the effects of water composition and temperature on the agglomeration-fixation reaction of microplastics using organosilanes were examined. We compared biologically treated municipal wastewater, seawater and demineralized water at temperatures ranging from 7.5–40 °C. Temperature variations and tested water compositions showed no negative effect on microplastic removal. The residues of the organosilanes remaining in the water after the fixation process were monitored using ICP-OES and DOC measurements. Only one of the organosilanes tested showed no dissolved residues in the waters. Microplastic encompasses a multitude of different types of polymers with different properties and surface chemistries. Therefore, we compared the efficiency of the process for polyethylene, polypropylene, polyamide, polyester, and polyvinylchloride as examples of common polymer types with different chemical compositions. A strong effect of the polarity of microplastics and organosilanes on removal efficiency was observed. The organic groups of organosilanes can be chemically adapted to different polymer types. View Full-Text
Keywords: microplastic removal; sol-gel chemistry; organosilanes; agglomeration; wastewater; seawater; water treatment microplastic removal; sol-gel chemistry; organosilanes; agglomeration; wastewater; seawater; water treatment
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sturm, M.T.; Horn, H.; Schuhen, K. Removal of Microplastics from Waters through Agglomeration-Fixation Using Organosilanes—Effects of Polymer Types, Water Composition and Temperature. Water 2021, 13, 675. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13050675

AMA Style

Sturm MT, Horn H, Schuhen K. Removal of Microplastics from Waters through Agglomeration-Fixation Using Organosilanes—Effects of Polymer Types, Water Composition and Temperature. Water. 2021; 13(5):675. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13050675

Chicago/Turabian Style

Sturm, Michael Toni, Harald Horn, and Katrin Schuhen. 2021. "Removal of Microplastics from Waters through Agglomeration-Fixation Using Organosilanes—Effects of Polymer Types, Water Composition and Temperature" Water 13, no. 5: 675. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13050675

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