Application of Spherical Mesoporous Silica MCM-41 for Adsorption of Dibenzothiophene (A Sulfur Containing Compound) from Model Oil

Document Type: Research Article

Authors

1 Biotechnology Department, University of Guilan, University Campus 2, Guilan, I.R. IRAN

2 Materials and Energy Research Center, Tehran, I.R. IRAN

Abstract

Spherical mesoporous silica MCM-41 was synthesized for adsorptive removal of sulfur compounds from fossil fuels using 1mM solution of dibenzothiophene (DBT) in dodecane as model oil. The prepared silica adsorbent has been characterized by nitrogen adsorption-desorption analysis as well as Small Angle X-ray Scattering (SAXS), and transmission and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) methods. Results showed that the prepared mesoporous adsorbent has ordered pore structures with surface area of 1106 m2/g and mean pore diameter of 3.54 nm. SEM micrographs indicated that prepared mesoporous silica (MCM-41) has spherical morphology with the narrow size distribution in the range of 200-300 nm. Hexagonal structure of pores has also been confirmed by high resolution transmission electron microscopy and SAXS pattern. High performance liquid chromatography analysis has also been utilized to study the kinetics of the DBT adsorption from dodecane solution by means of the synthesized silica. Results showed that 0.03 g/mL of mesoporous silica has capability to adsorb more than 42% of DBT (a sulfur containing compound) from dodecane solution. The improvement of mass transfer via adsorption DBT by the prepared nanosorbent is an efficient method for enhancement of biodesulfurization kinetic.

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