Bioinspired Multifunctional Foam with Self-Cleaning and Oil/Water Separation

Authors

  • Xiyao Zhang,

    1. Key Laboratory of Bio-Inspired Smart Interfacial, Science and Technology of Ministry of Education, School of Chemistry and Environment, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, P. R. China
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  • Zhou Li,

    1. Key Laboratory of Bio-Inspired Smart Interfacial, Science and Technology of Ministry of Education, School of Chemistry and Environment, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, P. R. China
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  • Kesong Liu,

    Corresponding author
    1. Key Laboratory of Bio-Inspired Smart Interfacial, Science and Technology of Ministry of Education, School of Chemistry and Environment, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, P. R. China
    • Key Laboratory of Bio-Inspired Smart Interfacial, Science and Technology of Ministry of Education, School of Chemistry and Environment, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, P. R. China.
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  • Lei Jiang

    1. Key Laboratory of Bio-Inspired Smart Interfacial, Science and Technology of Ministry of Education, School of Chemistry and Environment, Beihang University, Beijing 100191, P. R. China
    2. Beijing National Laboratory for Molecular Sciences (BNLMS), Key Laboratory of Organic Solids, Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100190, P. R. China
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Abstract

Oil/water separation is a worldwide challenge. Learning from nature provides a promising approach for the construction of functional materials with oil/water separation. In this contribution, inspired by superhydrophobic self-cleaning lotus leaves and porous biomaterials, a facile method is proposed to fabricate polyurethane foam with simultaneous superhydrophobicity and superoleophilicity. Due to its low density, light weight, and superhydrophobicity, the as-prepared foam can float easily on water. Furthermore, the foam demonstrates super-repellency towards corrosive liquids, self-cleaning, and oil/water separation properties, possessing multifunction integration. We expect that this low-cost process can be readily and widely adopted for the design of multifunctional foams for large-area oil-spill cleanup.

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