Gel-Based Materials for Pollution Control and Remediation

A special issue of Gels (ISSN 2310-2861). This special issue belongs to the section "Gel Applications".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 March 2024) | Viewed by 2272

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Polymer Science, The Egyptian Petroleum Research Institute, Cairo 11727, Egypt
Interests: environmental chemistry; AFM characterization; polymer gels

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Guest Editor
Institute on Membrane Technology-Research National Council, CNR-ITM, 87036 Rende, Italy
Interests: advanced membranes manufacturing; nanomaterials; smart surfaces and coatings; green membrane technologies; sustainable solutions for water and environmental remediation; intelligent membranes for applications in textiles and cultural heritage assets; gels
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In recent decades, climate changes and environmental pollution have resulted from different human activities, complicating the survival of the entire ecosystem. Scientists are working hard to lessen or prevent these dramatic changes through the removal of pollutants and hazardous compounds from the environment. Different purification approaches have been implemented in recent years, including precipitation, ion exchange, catalysis, conversion, micro and nano-filtration, and selective molecular separations. The adsorption technique is one of the most effective procedures to remove pollutants from surroundings. Sustainable materials with outstanding properties can be used as absorbers and vehicles for different pollutants. Among other systems, functional gels have proven to be effective candidates for the removal of different hazardous organic, inorganic and biological pollutants from the environment. The performance of gel adsorbents depends strongly on the constituents of the gels as well as the functions are strictly connected to the polymer networks of the gels. The powerful action of gels to adsorb can be successfully combined with an action of conversion and/or separation depending upon specific separation mechanisms, which can include adsorption–desorption, molecular recognition, catalytic conversion, affinity, stimuli responsiveness, molecular sieving, etc.

Therefore, this Special Issue covers the following topics:

  • Polymer networks;
  • Materials affinity;
  • Swelling–deswelling mechanisms;
  • Phase separation;
  • Adsorption and diffusion mechanisms;
  • Gels adsorbents;
  • Multi-functional gels;
  • Gels integrated with membrane functions;
  • New trends in Gel synthesis and characterization;
  • Experimental and theoretical investigations;
  • The application of gels as adsorbents for the removal of hazardous organic, inorganic and biological pollutants;
  • Gels for water conservation (superabsorbent hydrogels);
  • Gel reusability and sustainability;
  • Gels as sensors for different contaminants;
  • Green gels as Carbon dioxide sensors.

Original articles, reviews and mini-reviews, and communications are welcome.

Prof. Dr. Manar Abdel-Raouf
Dr. Annarosa Gugliuzza
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Gels is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • hydrogels
  • oil sorbers
  • PAHs
  • heavy metals
  • radionuclides
  • dyes
  • green polymers
  • super absorbent hydrogels
  • gels absorbents
  • multi-functional gels
  • gel-based natural polymers
  • polymer networks
  • gels characterization
  • superabsorbent hydrogels
  • green gels
  • carbon dioxide sensors
  • water remediation, environment remediation
  • pollution control

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

19 pages, 7459 KiB  
Article
Loading of Silver (I) Ion in L-Cysteine-Functionalized Silica Gel Material for Aquatic Purification
by Mohammed A. Al-Anber, Malak Al Ja’afreh, Idrees F. Al-Momani, Ahmed K. Hijazi, Dinara Sobola, Suresh Sagadevan and Salsabeel Al Bayaydah
Gels 2023, 9(11), 865; https://doi.org/10.3390/gels9110865 - 30 Oct 2023
Viewed by 927
Abstract
The L-cysteine-functionalized silica (SG-CysNa+) matrix was effectively loaded with silver (I) ions using the batch sorption technique. Optimal Ag(I) loading into SG-CysNa+ reached 98% at pHi = 6, 80 rpm, 1 mg L−1 [...] Read more.
The L-cysteine-functionalized silica (SG-CysNa+) matrix was effectively loaded with silver (I) ions using the batch sorption technique. Optimal Ag(I) loading into SG-CysNa+ reached 98% at pHi = 6, 80 rpm, 1 mg L−1, and a temperature of 55 °C. The Langmuir isotherm was found to be suitable for Ag(I) binding onto SG-CysNa+ active sites, forming a homogeneous monolayer (R2 = 0.999), as confirmed by FTIR spectroscopy. XRD analysis indicated matrix stability and the absence of Ag2O and Ag(0) phases, observed from diffraction peaks. The pseudo-second-order model (R2 > 0.999) suggested chemisorption-controlled adsorption, involving chemical bonding between silver ions and SG-CysNa+ surface. Thermodynamic parameters were calculated, indicating higher initial concentrations leading to increased equilibrium constants, negative ΔG values, positive ΔS values, and negative ΔH. This study aimed to explore silver ion saturation on silica surfaces and the underlying association mechanisms. The capability to capture and load silver (I) ions onto functionalized silica gel materials holds promise for environmental and water purification applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gel-Based Materials for Pollution Control and Remediation)
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16 pages, 2612 KiB  
Article
Optimization of the Methods to Develop Stable Polymer Gels for Water Management in Medium- and Ultra-High-Salinity Reservoirs
by Shuiqing Hu, Mingchen Ding, Yafei Hu, Yefei Wang and Jiangyang Dong
Gels 2023, 9(7), 540; https://doi.org/10.3390/gels9070540 - 03 Jul 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 893
Abstract
Polymer gels suffer from a serious syneresis issue when exposed to high-temperature and high-salinity (HTHS) conditions, which limits their use as water-treatment agents in this type of reservoir. In this paper, the effects of the polymer type/concentration, deoxidizers, and stabilizers on the long-term [...] Read more.
Polymer gels suffer from a serious syneresis issue when exposed to high-temperature and high-salinity (HTHS) conditions, which limits their use as water-treatment agents in this type of reservoir. In this paper, the effects of the polymer type/concentration, deoxidizers, and stabilizers on the long-term stability of polymer gels were systematically studied; thus, the methods to develop stable polymer gels for two typical levels of salinity were optimized. The results show the following: (1) For a medium-salinity condition (TDS: 33,645.0 mg/L) at 125 °C, conventional HPAM gels completely dehydrate within only 1 day, and the addition of a deoxidizer hardly improved their stability. Some special polymers, e.g., AP-P5, MKY, and CPAM, are able to form stable gels if a high concentration of 0.8% is used; the syneresis rate of these gels is about 10% after 30 days. However, the addition of the complexant sodium oxalate significantly improves the stability of gels formed by all five of these different polymers, which behave with a 0% syneresis rate after 30 days pass. Complexants are the most economical and feasible agents to develop stable gels in medium-salinity water. (2) Gels enhanced using the methods above all become unstable in a more challenging ultra-high-saline condition (TDS: 225,068.0 mg/L). In this case, special calcium- and magnesium-resistant polymers are required to prepare stable gels, which show 0% syneresis rates after 30 days, have relatively low strengths, but do produce a good plugging effect in high-permeability cores. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gel-Based Materials for Pollution Control and Remediation)
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