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Understanding the Adsorption of PFOA on MIL-101(Cr)-Based Anionic-Exchange Metal–Organic Frameworks: Comparing DFT Calculations with Aqueous Sorption Experiments

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journal contribution
posted on 21.07.2015, 00:00 by Kai Liu, Siyu Zhang, Xiyue Hu, Kunyang Zhang, Ajay Roy, Gang Yu
To examine the effects of different functionalization methods on adsorption behavior, anionic-exchange MIL-101­(Cr) metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) were synthesized using preassembled modification (PAM) and postsynthetic modification (PSM) methods. Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) adsorption results indicated that the maximum PFOA adsorption capacity was 1.19 and 1.89 mmol g–1 for anionic-exchange MIL-101­(Cr) prepared by PAM and PSM, respectively. The sorption equilibrium was rapidly reached within 60 min. Our results indicated that PSM is a better modification technique for introducing functional groups onto MOFs for adsorptive removal because PAM places functional groups onto the aperture of the nanopore, which hinders the entrance of organic contaminants. Our experimental results and the results of complementary density functional theory calculations revealed that in addition to the anion-exchange mechanism, the major PFOA adsorption mechanism is a combination of Lewis acid/base complexation between PFOA and Cr­(III) and electrostatic interaction between PFOA and the protonated carboxyl groups of the bdc (terephthalic acid) linker.