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September 2010

Designer Particle Proves Popular with ChemComm Readers

Nanoparticle that selectively remove carbon dioxide A tough, hard-working particle known as nZIF-8 that can selectively remove carbon dioxide from a complex mixture of gases was designed by scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Enlarge Image

Sturdy and selective. These principles guided the team at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory when they designed the hexagonal-shaped crystals that pull carbon dioxide out of an intricate mixture of gases. The team's article, including how they built the crystals known as nZIF-8, has proven to be very popular in Chemical Communications. The article was published on the journal's website in March and graced the journal's printed cover on July 21. The article was one of the top 5 most accessed articles in July.

The interest in nZIF-8, a nano zeolitic imidazolate framework, revolves around its ability to remove carbon dioxide impurities from gaseous streams. Many industries, including the refinement of natural gas, need an affordable, selective material that removes significant quantities of carbon dioxide. In addition, the material should be reusable, trapping the target and releasing it under specific circumstances nanoscale ZIF-8 just might be the answer.

Acknowledgments: DOE's Office of Basic Energy Sciences funded this study by the interdisciplinary team of Satish Nune, Praveen Thallapally, Alice Dohnalkova, Chongmin Wang, Jun Liu, and Greg Exarhos of PNNL. Work was done in DOE's EMSL, a national scientific user facility.

Reference: Nune SK, PK Thallapally, A Dohnalkova, C Wang, J Liu, and GJ Exarhos. 2010. "Synthesis and Properties of Nano Zeolitic Imidazolate Frameworks." Chemical Communications 46:4878-4880. DOI :10.1039/c002088e.

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