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Special Issue "Porous Carbons for Environmental Applications"

A special issue of Molecules (ISSN 1420-3049). This special issue belongs to the section "Materials Chemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 28 February 2023 | Viewed by 5836

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Ines Matos
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
LAQV, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova deLisboa, Caparica, Portugal
Interests: heterogeneous catalysis; porous materials; porous carbons; biomass valorization; adsorption; nanomaterials; kinetic modeling; catalyst synthesis
Dr. Maria Bernardo
E-Mail Website
Co-Guest Editor
LAQV-Requimte, NOVA School of Science and Technology (FCT NOVA), Lisbon, Portugal
Interests: Porous carbons; Water treatment; Adsorption; Biomass valorization; Nanomaterials
Dr. Elena Perez Mayoral
E-Mail Website
Co-Guest Editor
Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED), Madrid, Spain
Interests: Organic and Inorganic Chemistry; Green Chemistry; Fine chemistry; Heterogeneous Catalysis; Material Science

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Porous carbons of a different nature, structure, and properties have found application in a wide variety of fields. These materials are considered very sustainable and ecofriendly, and as such suitable for a number of environmental applications: from adsorption to catalysis, and from water treatment to sustainable production process, including energy production. This Special Issue intends to address the advances and contributions of these materials in relevant areas related to the environment.

Dr. Ines Matos
Dr. Maria Bernardo
Dr. Elena Perez Mayoral
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. Molecules is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly 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 2300 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

  • Porous carbon materials
  • Environmental application 
  • Adsorption
  • Catalysis
  • Green chemistry
  • Biomass carbon
  • Carbon for energy
  • water remediation
  • Pollutants

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

Article
Electrochemical and Catalytic Properties of Carbon Dioxide-Activated Graphite Felt
Molecules 2022, 27(19), 6298; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27196298 (registering DOI) - 24 Sep 2022
Abstract
The commercial graphite felt GFA 10 was subjected to an activation process with the use of CO2 at 900 °C for 35 and 70 min. Pristine and heat-treated materials were characterized using various methods: low-temperature N2 adsorption, SEM, and EDS. Voltammetric [...] Read more.
The commercial graphite felt GFA 10 was subjected to an activation process with the use of CO2 at 900 °C for 35 and 70 min. Pristine and heat-treated materials were characterized using various methods: low-temperature N2 adsorption, SEM, and EDS. Voltammetric measurements of GFA samples (before and after activation) as the working electrode were carried out. Voltammograms were recorded in aqueous solutions of 4-chlorophenol and sodium sulfate as supporting electrolyte. The catalytic activity of GFA samples in the process of 4-chlorophenol oxidation with the use of H2O2 was also investigated. The influence of graphite felt thermal activation in the CO2 atmosphere on its electrochemical and catalytic behavior was analyzed and discussed. Results of the investigation indicate that GFA activated in CO2 can be applied as an electrode material or catalytic material in the removal of organic compounds from industrial wastewater. However, the corrosion resistance of GFA, which is decreasing during the activation, needs to be refined. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porous Carbons for Environmental Applications)
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Article
Activated Carbon/Pectin Composite Enterosorbent for Human Protection from Intoxication with Xenobiotics Pb(II) and Sodium Diclofenac
Molecules 2022, 27(7), 2296; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules27072296 - 01 Apr 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 949
Abstract
The use of enterosorbents—materials which can be administered orally and eliminate toxic substances from the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) by sorption—offers an attractive complementary protection of humans against acute and chronic poisoning. In this study, we report the results of developing a microgranulated binary [...] Read more.
The use of enterosorbents—materials which can be administered orally and eliminate toxic substances from the gastrointestinal tract (GIT) by sorption—offers an attractive complementary protection of humans against acute and chronic poisoning. In this study, we report the results of developing a microgranulated binary biomedical preparation for oral use. It was designed with a core-shell structure based on pectin with low degree of esterification as the core, and nanoporous activated carbon produced from rice husk, AC-RH, as the shell, designated as [email protected] The adsorption properties of the synthesized materials were studied in aqueous solutions for the removal of lead (II) nitrate as a representative of toxic polyvalent metals and sodium diclofenac as an example of a medicinal drug. The composite enterosorbent demonstrated high adsorption capacity for both adsorbates studied. Adsorption kinetics of lead and diclofenac adsorption by AC-RH, pectin, and [email protected], fitted well a pseudo-second-order model. According to the Langmuir adsorption isotherm model, the best fitted isotherm model, the maximum adsorption capacity, qmax, of [email protected] for diclofenac and for lead (II) was 130.9 mg/g and 227.8 mg/g, respectively. Although qmax of AC-RH for diclofenac, 537.6 mg/g, and qmax of pectin for lead (II), 245.7 mg/g, were higher, the maximum adsorption capacity of AC-RH for lead (II), 52.7 mg/g, was much lower than that of the composite [email protected] and the adsorption capacity of pectin for diclofenac was negligible. Therefore, the composite material [email protected] demonstrated substantial efficiency of removing both species which potentially defines it as a more universal enterosorbent suitable for treating poisoning caused by substances of different chemical nature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porous Carbons for Environmental Applications)
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Article
Cobalt–Carbon Nanoparticles with Silica Support for Uptake of Cationic and Anionic Dyes from Polluted Water
Molecules 2021, 26(24), 7489; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26247489 - 10 Dec 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 823
Abstract
Silica-supported hierarchical graphitic carbon sheltering cobalt nanoparticles [email protected]2 (1) were prepared by pyrolysis at 850 °C of [Co(phen)(H2O)4]SO4·2H2O complex with silica in the presence of pyrene as a carbon source under nitrogen atmosphere. Nanocomposites [...] Read more.
Silica-supported hierarchical graphitic carbon sheltering cobalt nanoparticles [email protected]2 (1) were prepared by pyrolysis at 850 °C of [Co(phen)(H2O)4]SO4·2H2O complex with silica in the presence of pyrene as a carbon source under nitrogen atmosphere. Nanocomposites (2) and (3) were obtained by acid treatment of (1) with HCl and HF acid, respectively. The nanocomposites showed rough hierarchical carbon microstructures over silica support decorated with irregular cobalt nanospheres and nanorods 50 to 200 nm in diameter. The nanoparticles consist of graphitic shells and cobalt cores. SEM, EDAX and TEM elemental mapping indicate a noticeable loss of cobalt in the case of (2) and loss of cobalt and silica in the case of (3) with an increase in porosity. Nanocomposite (3) showed the highest BET surface area 217.5 m2g−1. Raman spectrum shows defect D-band and graphitic G-band as expected in carbon nanostructures. PXRD reveals the presence of cobalt(0) nanoparticles. XPS indicates the presence of Co(II) oxides and the successful doping of nitrogen in the nanocomposites. Moreover, TEM elemental mapping provides information about the abundance of Si, Co, C, N and S elements in zones. Nanocomposite (1) showed maximum uptake capacity of 192.3 and 224.5 mg/g for crystal violet CV and methyl orange MO dyes, respectively. Nanocomposite (2) showed a capacity of 94.1 and 225.5 mg/g for CV and MO dyes, respectively. Nanocomposite (4) obtained after treatment of (1) with crystal violet proved successful adsorption of CV. Co-HGC (5) prepared without addition of silica has a capacity for CV equal to 192 mg/g, while it is 769.2 mg/g with MO. Electrostatics and π–π interactions of graphite and cobalt species in the nanocomposites with aromatic rings of cationic and anionic dyes are responsible for the adsorption. Yan et al. was the best model to describe column kinetics. The thomas column adsorption model showed that the maximum uptake capacity of (1) was 44.42 mg/g for CV and 32.62 mg/g for MO. for a column packed with 0.5 gm of (1) and dye concentration of 100 mg/L at a flow rate of 1 mL/min. The column was recycled three times with no noticeable clogging or degradation of nanocomposites. Thus, [email protected]2 adsorbents can be used efficiently to treat water contaminated with cationic and anionic dyes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porous Carbons for Environmental Applications)
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Article
Magnetic Nitrogen-Doped Porous Carbon Nanocomposite for Pb(II) Adsorption from Aqueous Solution
Molecules 2021, 26(16), 4809; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26164809 - 09 Aug 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 678
Abstract
We report in the present study the in situ formation of magnetic nanoparticles (Fe3O4 or Fe) within porous N-doped carbon (Fe3O4/[email protected]) via simple impregnation, polymerization, and calcination sequentially. The synthesized nanocomposite structural properties were investigated using [...] Read more.
We report in the present study the in situ formation of magnetic nanoparticles (Fe3O4 or Fe) within porous N-doped carbon (Fe3O4/[email protected]) via simple impregnation, polymerization, and calcination sequentially. The synthesized nanocomposite structural properties were investigated using different techniques showing its good construction. The formed nanocomposite showed a saturation magnetization (Ms) of 23.0 emu g−1 due to the implanted magnetic nanoparticles and high surface area from the porous N-doped carbon. The nanocomposite was formed as graphite-type layers. The well-synthesized nanocomposite showed a high adsorption affinity toward Pb2+ toxic ions. The nanosorbent showed a maximum adsorption capacity of 250.0 mg/g toward the Pb2+ metallic ions at pH of 5.5, initial Pb2+ concentration of 180.0 mg/L, and room temperature. Due to its superparamagnetic characteristics, an external magnet was used for the fast separation of the nanocomposite. This enabled the study of the nanocomposite reusability toward Pb2+ ions, showing good chemical stability even after six cycles. Subsequently, Fe3O4/[email protected] nanocomposite was shown to have excellent efficiency for the removal of toxic Pb2+ ions from water. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porous Carbons for Environmental Applications)
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Article
Supported Biofilms on Carbon–Oxide Composites for Nitrate Reduction in Agricultural Waste Water
Molecules 2021, 26(10), 2987; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26102987 - 18 May 2021
Viewed by 650
Abstract
Escherichia coli colonies were grown on different supports for the removal of nitrates from water. A carbon material and different commercial metal oxides, such as SiO2, TiO2 and Al2O3, and their corresponding carbon–metal oxide composites were [...] Read more.
Escherichia coli colonies were grown on different supports for the removal of nitrates from water. A carbon material and different commercial metal oxides, such as SiO2, TiO2 and Al2O3, and their corresponding carbon–metal oxide composites were studied. The physicochemical properties were analyzed by different techniques and the results were correlated with their performance in the denitrification process. Developed biofilms effectively adhere to the supports and always reach the complete reduction of nitrates to gaseous products. Nevertheless, faster processes occur when the biofilm is supported on mesoporous and non-acid materials (carbon and silica). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porous Carbons for Environmental Applications)
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Article
Study of the Potential of Water Treatment Sludges in the Removal of Emerging Pollutants
Molecules 2021, 26(4), 1010; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26041010 - 14 Feb 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1872
Abstract
Presently, water quantity and quality problems persist both in developed and developing countries, and concerns have been raised about the presence of emerging pollutants (EPs) in water. The circular economy provides ways of achieving sustainable resource management that can be implemented in the [...] Read more.
Presently, water quantity and quality problems persist both in developed and developing countries, and concerns have been raised about the presence of emerging pollutants (EPs) in water. The circular economy provides ways of achieving sustainable resource management that can be implemented in the water sector, such as the reuse of drinking water treatment sludges (WTSs). This study evaluated the potential of WTS containing a high concentration of activated carbon for the removal of two EPs: the steroid hormones 17β-estradiol (E2) and 17α-ethinylestradiol (EE2). To this end, WTSs from two Portuguese water treatment plants (WTPs) were characterised and tested for their hormone adsorbance potential. Both WTSs showed a promising adsorption potential for the two hormones studied due to their textural and chemical properties. For WTS1, the final concentration for both hormones was lower than the limit of quantification (LOQ). As for WTS2, the results for E2 removal were similar to WTS1, although for EE2, the removal efficiency was lower (around 50%). The overall results indicate that this method may lead to new ways of using this erstwhile residue as a possible adsorbent material for the removal of several EPs present in wastewaters or other matrixes, and as such contributing to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) targets. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Porous Carbons for Environmental Applications)
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