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Keywords:

  • absorption;
  • adsorption;
  • clays;
  • dyes/pigments;
  • organic–inorganic hybrid composites
Thumbnail image of graphical abstract

The neutral organic dye indigo forms an inorganic–organic hybrid material with nanoclays (see picture; blue circles on disks symbolizing indigo, spheres indicating liberated cations) and can thus be transferred into aqueous solution. Solids recovered from these solutions resemble the ancient Maya Blue pigment. The method can also be applied to other hydrophobic species and may open the gate for novel solution chemistry, including photonic and catalytic applications.