Amorphous silica molecular sieving membranes by sol-gel processing

Authors

  • Dr. Guozhong Cao,

    1. NSF Center for Micro-Engineered Ceramics and Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering 209 Farris Engineering Center The University of New Mexico Albuquerque, NM 87131-1341 (USA)
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  • Yunfeng Lu,

    1. NSF Center for Micro-Engineered Ceramics and Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering 209 Farris Engineering Center The University of New Mexico Albuquerque, NM 87131-1341 (USA)
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  • Laurent Delattre,

    1. NSF Center for Micro-Engineered Ceramics and Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering 209 Farris Engineering Center The University of New Mexico Albuquerque, NM 87131-1341 (USA)
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  • Prof. C. Jeffrey Brinker,

    1. NSF Center for Micro-Engineered Ceramics and Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering 209 Farris Engineering Center The University of New Mexico Albuquerque, NM 87131-1341 (USA)
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  • Prof. Gabriel P. López

    Corresponding author
    1. NSF Center for Micro-Engineered Ceramics and Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering 209 Farris Engineering Center The University of New Mexico Albuquerque, NM 87131-1341 (USA)
    • NSF Center for Micro-Engineered Ceramics and Department of Chemical and Nuclear Engineering 209 Farris Engineering Center The University of New Mexico Albuquerque, NM 87131-1341 (USA)
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  • The authors are very grateful for the financial support from the UNM/ NSF Center for Micro-Engineered Ceramics, the National Science Foundation (CTS-9101658, HRD-9450475), the Gas Research Institute, the Electric Power Research Institute, and the Morgantown Energy Technology Center. R. Vaidya, R. Sehgal and N. K. Raman are acknowledged for fruitful discussions and technical assistance. Sandia National Laboratories is a US Department of Energy Facility Supported by DOE Contract Number DE-AC04-94al85000.

Abstract

Microporous ceramics and ceramic membranes have many potential applications, for example, in the chemical, environmental, energy conversion, and automotive industries. An organic template approach using sol-gel processing is described by which microporous amorphous silica is synthesized. It is shown that the very narrow pore size distribution is comparable to that of the zeolite ZSM-5 and that the membranes have ideal gas separation factors at least two orders of magnitude larger than those expected for a Knudsen diffusion separation mechanism.

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