American Chemical Society
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Adsorption of Hydrocarbons on Mesoporous SBA-15 and PHTS Materials

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journal contribution
posted on 2005-03-15, 00:00 authored by Ellen Van Bavel, Vera Meynen, Pegie Cool, Kurt Lebeau, Etienne F. Vansant
Plugged hexagonal templated silica (PHTS) materials are synthesized using a high TEOS/EO20PO70EO20 ratio in the SBA-15 synthesis. This generates internal microporous nanocapsules or plugs in part of the channels, which could be inferred from the two-step desorption branch. These materials exhibit a tunable amount of open and plugged pores and a very high micropore volume (up to 0.24 mL/g) and are more stable than the conventional micellar templated structures known so far. In this study the adsorption properties of PHTS are investigated and compared to those of its plug-free analogue SBA-15. For this purpose nitrogen, n-hexane, n-heptane, c-hexane, 3-methylpentane, 1-hexene, and water were adsorbed on SBA-15 and PHTSs with a different ratio of open and plugged mesopores. The adsorption of n-hexane, c-hexane, n-heptane, and 3-methylpentane on SBA-15 and PHTS-A demonstrated that the presence of the plugs had an effect on the uptake of adsorbate in the low relative pressure region, the position of the capillary condensation step, and the total adsorbed amount of adsorbate. The results showed that n-heptane and 3-methylpentane cannot access part of the micropore system of SBA-15 and PHTS-A. Adsorption of c-hexane and n-hexane on PHTS-A indicated that not only the kinetic diameter but also the shape of the molecule is an important factor for being able to be adsorbed into the micropores or past the plugs. Moreover, these two adsorbates were the most efficient in filling up the available pore volume. From the adsorption of n-hexane on PHTSs with a different ratio of open and plugged pores, it was concluded that the size of the plugs differed, which depends on the synthesis conditions. Water adsorption isotherms proved SBA-15 and PHTS-B to be more hydrophobic than PHTS-A. n-Hexane, 1-hexene, and toluene were adsorbed on SBA-15 and the PHTSs to investigate the influence of the polarity of the adsorbate. The isotherms showed higher uptakes for polar adsorbates on more hydrophobic materials and vice versa.