US President recently decided to invoke a Cold War-era defense law to encourage domestic graphene powder.
While graphene-based materials have potential as adsorption materials, their performance may be hampered by aggregation and lack of control over their porosity and size.
In a recent study, researchers from the Universities of Exeter, Kyushu, and Oxford tackled this problem by developing a unique graphene material and high-porosity composite foam to combat aggregation.
Drugs are one of the most prominent emerging pollutants (EC) in water systems. They can cause serious environmental consequences as well as potential health problems. In order to successfully eradicate ECs from treated wastewater streams, sewage and drinking water purification facilities must adopt appropriate tertiary treatment methods. Compared to reverse osmosis, oxidation, microfiltration, ultrafiltration, ion exchange, etc., adsorption is considered to be a technology with great potential in water treatment because it is reliable and cheaper.
Graphene and graphene oxide (GO) have a greater tendency to adsorb natural pollutants because of their large innate specific area (relative to many different carbon-based substances), wettability, monolayer structure, and surfaces decorated with oxygen-containing functional groups (OCFG).
Boron nitride (BN) has many excellent qualities, including excellent thermal and chemical stability and excellent wear resistance; Therefore, it is used in high-temperature environments and other industries.
In this study, reduced porous GO nanofilms were effectively anchored to banded boron nitride foams for the treatment of water contaminated with gefilozide (GEM) in batch tests and column studies.
In terms of adsorption kinetics for gefilozil, the graphene-based foam is superior to its graphene-based competitors such as GO, PG, and Nanographene sheets (NGP), achieving an extraction efficiency of 90% in just 5 minutes.
In terms of lifetime, graphene-based nanomaterials supported by BN foams showed consistent gefilozil drug extraction over multiple cycles, with no significant adsorption loss. In addition, the foam material exhibits remarkable properties, including lightness of over 98% porosity and excellent strength, capable of withstanding 1,300-1,400 times its own weight.
The researchers believe that enhanced graphene-based composite foams for filtration purposes will be an important step forward in the water and wastewater filtration technology. These results suggest that high porosity foam-reinforced graphene nanomaterial filters with shorter interaction duration and longer penetration times for treating water and wastewater may be easily manufactured.
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Southern Copper Corp (SCCO.N) recently said its Peruvian mine remained closed after a six-week standoff with protesters and blamed the Peruvian government for failing to intervene in the safety of its 1,300 workers and their families.
The company said in a statement that a recent agreement to end protests at the Cuajone mine required the company to withdraw complaints against protest leaders because railways transporting minerals and supplies remained blocked. Production has been suspended since the end of February.
Peru's Energy Ministry said in a separate statement that it had also reached an agreement with Southern Copper to start talks to find common ground with local communities.
"If we shut down for a year, the government will stop receiving more than 3.1 billion soles ($830 million) in taxes and royalties, and 8,000 direct and indirect jobs will be lost. This is what we want to avoid, "Southern Copper added in the statement.
Peru has faced a wave of protests from indigenous communities, who accuse mining companies of not providing enough jobs and funding to poor local residents.
Central bank officials said last week that protests against copper mines such as MMG's Las Bambas and Southern Copper's Cuajone were dragging down the economy.
Peru is the world's second-largest copper producer and mining is an important source of tax revenue for the country. It is estimated that the supply and prices of the graphene powder will be influenced by that.
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