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This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 40 No. 6, p. 1991-1994
    Received: July 11, 2010

    * Corresponding author(s): xjpeng@rcees.ac.cn
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Mobility of Acid-Treated Carbon Nanotubes in Water-Saturated Porous Media

  1. X. J. Peng *a,
  2. C. J. Duab,
  3. Z. Lianga,
  4. J. Wanga,
  5. Z. K. Luana and
  6. W. J. Liac
  1. a State Key Lab. of Environmental Aquatic Chemistry, Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100085, China
    b Dep. of Chemistry and Environment, China Univ. of Mining & Technology, Beijing 100083, China
    c School of Urban Construction, Hebei Univ. of Engineering, Handan 056038, Hebei, China. Assigned to Associate Editor Mark Chappell


The production, use, and disposal of nanomaterials may inevitably lead to their appearance in water. With the development of new industries around nanomaterials, it seems necessary to be concerned about the transport of nanomaterials in the environment. In this paper, the transport of acid-treated carbon nanotubes (CNTs) in porous media was investigated. Before the mobility investigation, the stability of acid-treated CNT dispersions was studied using ultraviolet-visible spectra and it was indicated that, under the chemical conditions employed in this work, there was no apparent aggregation. The mobility investigation showed that transport of acid-treated CNTs increased with treatment time due to increase in particle zeta potential. Carbon nanotubes treated with nitric acid for 2, 6, and 12 h possessed measured zeta potentials of −30.0, −43.0, and −48.5 mV, respectively. Utilizing clean-bed filtration theory, we showed that acid-treated CNTs have the potential to migrate 3.28, 5.67, and 7.69 m in saturated glass beads, respectively. We showed that solution ionic strength and pH have important effects on the mobility of acid-treated CNTs. Increasing the pH from 6.0 to 7.9 resulted in an increase in migration potential from 2.96 to 10.86 m. Increasing the ionic strength from 0.005 to 0.020 M resulted in a decrease in CNT migration potential from 5.67 to 1.42 m.

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