Navigation Links
New material absorbs, conserves oil
Date:2/4/2010

An ultra-lightweight sponge made of clay and a bit of high-grade plastic draws oil out of contaminated water but leaves the water behind.

And, lab tests show that oil absorbed can be squeezed back out for use.

Case Western Reserve University researchers who made the material, called an aerogel, believe it will effectively clean up spills of all kinds of oils and solvents on factory floors and roadways, rivers and oceans.

The EPA estimates that 10 to 25 million gallons of oil are spilled annually in this country alone. Spilled oil ruins drinking water, is a fire and explosion hazard, damages farmland and beaches and destroys wildlife and habitats. The harm can last decades.

The aerogel is made by mixing clay with a polymer and water in a blender, said David Schiraldi, chairman of the Macromolecular Science and Engineering department at the Case School of Engineering.

The mixture is then freeze-dried; air fills the gaps left by the loss of water. The resulting material is super light, comprised of about 96 percent air, 2 percent polymer and 2 percent clay.

The oil-absorbing form is just one of a growing list of clay-based aerogels being made in Schiraldi's lab. By adding different polymers, they produce materials with different properties.

"This particular one is oleophilic or oil-loving," Schiraldi said. "Chemically, it hates water, loves oil: the perfect combination."

The aeorgel can be made in granular form, in sheets or in blocks of almost any shape and is effective in fresh and saltwater or on a surface. Because absorption is a physical phenomenon, there is no chemical reaction between the material and oil. If the oil is otherwise not contaminated, it can be used.

Oil spill experts on both coasts say that the ability to squeeze out and conserve the oil is an advantage over other products currently available.

The material was first made when Schiraldi challenged his then-PhD student Matt Gawryla with idea of making kitty litter. Gawryla added the oil cleanup concept to the program.

Case Western Reserve has granted a 9-month exclusive license for this and other clay-based aerogel technologies to AeroClay, Inc. a startup company. Schiraldi will be chief scientific officer of the new company.


'/>"/>

Contact: Kevin Mayhood
kevin.mayhood@case.edu
216-368-4442
Case Western Reserve University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology technology :

1. An easy way to see the worlds thinnest material
2. Metamaterials could reduce friction in nanomachines
3. Water droplets direct self-assembly process in thin-film materials
4. £4.9 million to develop metamaterials for invisibility cloaks and perfect lenses
5. LANL Roadrunner simulates nanoscale material failure
6. New material could boost data storage, save energy
7. Tiny test tube experiment shows reaction of melting materials at the nano scale
8. Zeus: Dedicated to Advancing Biomaterial Technology with Enhanced Capabilities
9. EPA announces research strategy to study nanomaterials
10. Reportlinker Adds Nanoporous Materials Report
11. Researchers design new graphene-based, nanomaterial with magnetic properties
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... ... Park Systems , a leader in Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) since ... attendees and Park customers on Feb. 27, 2017 from 12-2pm at Morton’s The Steakhouse ... The luncheon will feature a talk on Automated AFM for Small-Scale and Large-Scale Surface ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... CINCINNATI , Feb. 22, 2017 Scientists ... drives inflammation and organ damage in Gaucher and maybe ... fewer risks and lower costs than current therapies. ... Children,s Hospital Medical Center , which also included investigators ... , report their data Feb. 22. The study ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... February 22, 2017 , ... ... of precision treatments for neurodegenerative diseases, today announced it has issued a scientific ... This is one of a series of commentaries from ProMIS’s scientific team offering ...
(Date:2/22/2017)... ... , ... LabRoots , the leading provider of educational and interactive virtual ... announce the launch of a new scholarship for young scientists seeking a degree in ... is open to all high school seniors, 17 years or older; as well as ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:2/21/2017)... Der weltweite Biobanking-Sektor wird bis zum Jahr 2018 ... mehr als 50 Vertretern aus verschiedenen Branchen wurde aber klar, ... Prognose zu realisieren. ... Zu den Schwierigkeiten für Biobanking-Profis ... die Biobank, die Implementierung Zeit sparender Technologien, ein besseres ...
(Date:2/13/2017)... FRANCISCO , Feb. 13, 2017  RSA ... centralized platform that is designed to enhance fraud ... latest release in the RSA Fraud & Risk ... enable organizations to leverage additional insights from internal ... tools to better protect their customers from targeted ...
(Date:2/9/2017)... 2017 The biomass boiler market report by ... boiler market globally in terms of revenue (US$ Mn) ... market for biomass boilers has been segmented on the ... country/region. The market based on feedstock type, has been ... & energy crops, urban residues, and others. On the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):