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Keywords:

  • copper;
  • oil/water separation;
  • oxidation;
  • superhydrophilic;
  • underwater superoleophobic

Abstract

A superhydrophilic and underwater superoleophobic Cu(OH)2-covered mesh with micro- and nanoscale hierarchical composite structures is successfully fabricated through a one-step chemical oxidation of a smooth-copper mesh. Such mesh, without any further modification, can selectively separate water from oil/water mixtures with high separation efficiency, and possess excellent stability even after 60 uses. This method provides a simple, low-cost, and scalable strategy for the purification of oily wastewater.