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Nanoporous materials for enviromental applications

Yin, C-Y, Mikhail, R.A. and Goh, B.M. (2009) Nanoporous materials for enviromental applications. JURUTERA, January . pp. 18-21.

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Nanotechnology is a scientific field that concerns the exploitation of minutely sized synthetic materials, which can be applied in various processes and benefit humans. In scientific terms, ‘nano’ is a prefix in the SI system of units and corresponds to 10-9 meter. Nanoporous materials are highly useful materials in various industrial processes due to their unique physical and chemical characteristics. The word ‘porous’ derives from the Greek word ‘πopos’ (poros) meaning ‘passage’ [1].

A nanoporous material consists of either an organic and/or inorganic framework, which maintains a porous structure with a typically large surface area in excess of 400m2/g. Based on the definition by the International Union of Pure Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), porous materials may be classified according to their pore diameters, namely, micropores (<2nm), mesopores (between 2nm and 50nm) and macropores (>50nm).

Nanoporous materials are highly versatile and can used in various industrial applications ranging from catalytic reactions, adsorption and environmental processes due to the presence of voids of controllable dimension at the atomic, molecular and nanometer scales [2]. As such, they are of interest to both chemical and environmental engineers, and with rising environmental concerns worldwide, the use of nanoporous materials in the removal of polluting species from different media as well as the recovery of useful ones has become more significant. This paper provides a general overview of the various types of nanoporous materials and their respective applications.

Item Type: Others
Publisher: The Institution of Engineers Malaysia
Copyright: © 2009 The Institution of Engineers, Malaysia and Dimension Publishing Sdn. Bhd.
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