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Magnetic Poly(vinylpyridine)-Coated Carbon Nanotubes: An Efficient Supramolecular Tool for Wastewater Purification

Authors

  • Dr. Laura Maggini,

    1. Department of Chemistry, University of Namur (FUNDP), Rue de Bruxelles 61, 5000 Namur (Belgium), Fax:(+32) 081-725433
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  • Dr. Jean-Marie Raquez,

    1. Laboratory of Polymeric and Composite Materials, Center of Innovation and Research in Materials and Polymers, University of Mons, Place du Parc 23, 7000 Mons (Belgium)
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  • Dr. Riccardo Marega,

    1. Department of Chemistry, University of Namur (FUNDP), Rue de Bruxelles 61, 5000 Namur (Belgium), Fax:(+32) 081-725433
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  • Jennifer Jensen Ahrens,

    1. Department of Chemistry, University of Namur (FUNDP), Rue de Bruxelles 61, 5000 Namur (Belgium), Fax:(+32) 081-725433
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  • Florent Pineux,

    1. Department of Chemistry, University of Namur (FUNDP), Rue de Bruxelles 61, 5000 Namur (Belgium), Fax:(+32) 081-725433
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  • Dr. Franck Meyer,

    1. Laboratory of Polymeric and Composite Materials, Center of Innovation and Research in Materials and Polymers, University of Mons, Place du Parc 23, 7000 Mons (Belgium)
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  • Prof. Philippe Dubois,

    Corresponding author
    1. Laboratory of Polymeric and Composite Materials, Center of Innovation and Research in Materials and Polymers, University of Mons, Place du Parc 23, 7000 Mons (Belgium)
    • Laboratory of Polymeric and Composite Materials, Center of Innovation and Research in Materials and Polymers, University of Mons, Place du Parc 23, 7000 Mons (Belgium)
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  • Prof. Davide Bonifazi

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Chemistry, University of Namur (FUNDP), Rue de Bruxelles 61, 5000 Namur (Belgium), Fax:(+32) 081-725433
    2. Department of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences and INSTM UdR Trieste, University of Trieste, Piazzale Europa 1, 34127 Trieste (Italy)
    • Department of Chemistry, University of Namur (FUNDP), Rue de Bruxelles 61, 5000 Namur (Belgium), Fax:(+32) 081-725433
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Abstract

Herein, we report the first example of a supramolecular carbon nanotube (CNT)-based magnetic depolluting agent for divalent metal ion (M2+) removal from aqueous solutions. In particular, magnetic multi-walled carbon nanotubes (m-MWCNTs) coated with poly(vinylpyridine) (PVPy) self-aggregate in aqueous solutions that contain divalent metal ions (such as Zn2+, Cu2+ and Pb2+) to form tight insoluble bundles in which the M2+ ions remain trapped through pyridyl–M2+–pyridyl interactions. Magnetic filtration ultimately affords the efficient separation of the depolluted solution from the precipitated M2+-CNT agglomerates. Upon acid treatment, the supramolecular threads could be disassembled to afford the free CNT–polymer hybrid, thus allowing recycling of the depolluting agent. All materials and complexation/decomplexation steps were thoroughly characterised by using thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), transmission and scanning electron microscopy (TEM and SEM, respectively). The quantification of the M2+ residual concentrations in water was evaluated by using inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES), which showed that, depending on the metal cation, this material can remove up to 99 % of the contaminant.

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