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A novel Janus sponge fabricated by a green strategy for simultaneous separation of oil/water emulsions and dye contaminants
Journal of Hazardous Materials  (IF10.588),  Pub Date : 2021-10-21, DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.127543
Xinjuan Zeng, Weicheng Cai, Shuyi Fu, Xiaomei Lin, Qiaorou Lu, Shuang Liao, Huawen Hu, Min Zhang, Cailong Zhou, Xiufang Wen, Shaozao Tan

A novel Janus sponge with the ability to remove complex contaminants from water is reported. Firstly, a superhydrophilic sponge (PA@PEI-sponge) is prepared via synthesizing negatively charged phytic acid@polyethyleneimine (PA@PEI) nanoparticles and assembling them on the surface of polydopamine (PDA) and PEI-modified polyurethane (PU) sponge through electrostatic adsorption. The Janus sponge is generated by modifying one side of the PA@PEI-sponge with PDMS, which exhibits superior separation efficiency and high filtration flux toward both water-in-oil and oil-in-water emulsions due to its multiplex selective wettability and the interconnected and tortuous 3D porous channels. The numerous negatively charged active sites of PA@PEI nanoparticles and PDA layer impart the superhydrophilic PA@PEI-sponge with the removal efficiency of 39.95 ± 0.27% for malachite green (MG) via simple flow-through filtration, which can be improved to 99.92 ± 0.07% by Janus modification. More importantly, the Janus sponge exhibits an excellent treatment capacity for complex mixtures containing emulsified oil and dye, with the separation efficiency above 99.59%. The Janus sponge also demonstrates the effective separation of real industrial wastewater collected from an acrylic dyeing plant. Together with a facile and green preparation strategy, this Janus sponge shows excellent application potential for simultaneous dye removal and oil/water emulsion separation.