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Nat Mater. 2003 Sep;2(9):591-4. Epub 2003 Aug 3.

Nanoporous carbide-derived carbon with tunable pore size.

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  • 1Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Drexel University, 3141 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.


Porous solids are of great technological importance due to their ability to interact with gases and liquids not only at the surface, but throughout their bulk. Although large pores can be produced and well controlled in a variety of materials, nanopores in the range of 2 nm and below (micropores, according to IUPAC classification) are usually achieved only in carbons or zeolites. To date, major efforts in the field of porous materials have been directed towards control of the size, shape and uniformity of the pores. Here we demonstrate that porosity of carbide-derived carbons (CDCs) can be tuned with subångström accuracy in a wide range by controlling the chlorination temperature. CDC produced from Ti3SiC2 has a narrower pore-size distribution than single-wall carbon nanotubes or activated carbons; its pore-size distribution is comparable to that of zeolites. CDCs are produced at temperatures from 200-1,200 degrees C as a powder, a coating, a membrane or parts with near-final shapes, with or without mesopores. They can find applications in molecular sieves, gas storage, catalysts, adsorbents, battery electrodes, supercapacitors, water/air filters and medical devices.

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