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Nanoparticle-Imprinted Silica Gel for the Size-Selective Capture of Silver Ultrafine Nanoparticles from Water

TitoloNanoparticle-Imprinted Silica Gel for the Size-Selective Capture of Silver Ultrafine Nanoparticles from Water
Tipo di pubblicazioneArticolo su Rivista peer-reviewed
Anno di Pubblicazione2023
AutoriPallavicini, P., Preti L., Protopapa Maria Lucia, Carbone Daniela, Capodieci Laura, Fernandez Y.A. Diaz, Milanese C., Taglietti A., and Doveri L.
RivistaMolecules (Basel, Switzerland)
Data di pubblicazioneJan-05-2023

A synthetic approach has been developed to prepare silica gel monoliths that embed well separated silver or gold spherical nanoparticles (NP), with diameters of 8, 18 and 115 nm. Fe3+, O2/cysteine and HNO3 were all successfully used to oxidize and remove silver NP from silica, while aqua regia was necessary for gold NP. In all cases, NP-imprinted silica gel materials were obtained, with spherical voids of the same dimensions of the dissolved particles. By grinding the monoliths, we prepared NP-imprinted silica powders that were able to efficiently reuptake silver ultrafine NP (Ag-ufNP, d = 8 nm) from aqueous solutions. Moreover, the NP-imprinted silica powders showed a remarkable size selectivity, based on the best match between NP radius and the curvature radius of the cavities, driven by the optimization of attractive Van der Waals forces between SiO2 and NP. Ag-ufNP are increasingly used in products, goods, medical devices, disinfectants, and their consequent diffusion in the environment is of rising concern. Although limited here to a proof-of-concept level, the materials and methods described in this paper may be an efficient solution for capturing Ag-ufNP from environmental waters and to safely dispose them.


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Titolo breveMolecules
Citation KeyPallavicini2023