Investigation of the Effectiveness of Graphene for Water Purification
Keywords:Graphene, Water Purification, Desalination
This project proposes another purpose for graphene in tandem with water desalination: water purification. Water consumption surpasses the Earth’s carrying capacity. While steps have been taken, desalination accounts for only 1% of alternative methods in generating clean water. This is mainly due to the large energy footprints and high capital costs. This water that is suitable for human consumption is additionally under new and increasing threats of pollution from industrialization allowing carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) to settle within the ocean long after the initial contamination. The danger of PAHs has been acknowledged by various filtration studies, but there has been a particular focus on an ambient air medium. Through researching the effectiveness of multi-layer freestanding graphene with nanometer scale pores to filter NaCl and PAHs from oil using IR spectroscopy to determine residual species after filtration with graphene and tetrahydrofuran (THF). Understanding the interactions of graphene and THF with NaCl and PAHs will allow great insight into new techniques of water filtration; such insight could be furthered with additional surface chemistry software simulations. This research will determine if graphene holds potential in water purification. Desalination is a promising solution to the restricted quantity of freshwater and the ability to attract and remove dangerous PAHs from ocean water could save aquatic life around the world. Synthesizing a device that reduces toxicity and salinity attributes in seawater could revolutionize the water filtration industry.
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