A team of Foundry staff and users have created a new organic-inorganic hybrid material that can quickly and selectively remove copper ions from water.
Significance and Impact
The hybrid material is water stable and adsorbs copper 30-50X faster than the current state-of-the-art. It provides an efficient tool for copper remediation as well as a blueprint for creating other hybrid materials for removing toxic metals from water.
- The researchers were inspired by the way proteins use histadine residues for binding copper ions.
- They designed a hydrogen-bonded organic-inorganic framework called ZIOS (zinc imidazole salicylaldoxime supramolecule) that is capable of rapid, selective copper capture.
- X-ray analyses conducted at the Advanced Light Source were used to better understand the copper uptake mechanisms and showed that the framework expands slightly in water, opening channels for copper adsorption.