White graphene remedy for water pollution

Park Sae-jin Reporter() | Posted : May 7, 2013, 11:24 | Updated : May 7, 2013, 11:24
A new research shows that carbon based material such as graphene can be used to clean the environment.

Since it has high surface area to weight ratio, it is a “perfect” material which can help in absorbing the pollutants in water.

Graphene has recently gained a lot of attention in the field of electronics. Research is underway to investigate its application in diverse fields.

Porous boron nitride “nano sheets” which are made up of layersof single atom with holes in it is designed by a team in Marie Curie University in France.

These porous sheets of boron nitride which are eventually called as nano sheets by scientist are stacked together to form a coarse white powder and this powder performed well in absorbing the pollutants. Thus, this makes them attractive for clean-up pollutants.

This porous materials exhibit “selective absorption” by absorbing only organic pollutants and keep the dyes out of water.

Boron nitride powder can absorb 33 times of its weight in ethylene glycol and 29 times of its weight in engine oil. The surprising thing is that after absorbing such a lot, the powder becomes saturated but still it floats on water and then the absorbed pollutants can be removed through the nooks of material. In this way, it performs much better than the graphene.

In the end, many authors and researchers working in the field of nano technology said that these porous Nano sheets or white powder possess all features which make them suitable for a variety of applications in purification of water but the commercialization and popularity of this material depends on the cost of this material.

If this amazing material can be manufactured at low cost, it could pave its way into the market and gain popularity.

By Ruchi Singh
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