Understanding the unusual adsorption behavior in hierarchical zeolite nanosheets

Peng Bai, David H. Olson, Michael Tsapatsis, J. Ilja Siepmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Hierarchical zeolites are advanced materials possessing the catalytic and adsorption properties of conventional zeolites while eliminating their transport limitations through the introduction of mesopores. Recent experiments comparing the adsorption in hierarchical self-pillared pentasils (SPP) and silicalite-1 (MFI) revealed an interesting crossover in sorbate loading for branched or long-chain alkanes but not for shorter linear alkanes, but an explanation for this behavior is not readily available through experimental probes due to the complications arising from the presence of multiple adsorption sites. Here we present a molecular simulation study on the adsorption of alkane isomers and show that a multi-step mechanism, found here for all molecules, is responsible for the observed phenomena. Crossover explained: Recent experiments comparing the adsorption in hierarchical self-pillared pentasils (SPP) and silicalite-1 (MFI) revealed an interesting crossover in sorbate loading for n-nonane (see figure) and branched alkanes. Simulations reproduce this unusual adsorption behavior and spatially resolved free energy of adsorption maps (see figure inset) illustrate a complex multi-step adsorption mechanism for all linear and branched alkanes investigated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2225-2229
Number of pages5
JournalChemPhysChem
Volume15
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 4 2014

Keywords

  • adsorption
  • molecular modeling
  • nanosheets
  • self-pillared pentasils
  • zeolites

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