Elucidation of the pore structure of SBA-2 using Monte Carlo simulation to interpret experimental data for the adsorption of light hydrocarbons

M Perez-Mendoza, J Gonzalez, P A Wright, N A Seaton

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20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We have measured the adsorption of methane and ethane to high pressure on SBA-2, a structured mesoporous silica composed of spheres connected by narrow channels. The experimental data were analyzed by carrying out Monte Carlo simulations of adsorption in pore structure models of different complexity and then adjusting the parameters of the models to match the Monte Carlo results to the experimental data. We found that a model based on single-sized spherical cavities was inadequate and that it is necessary to explicitly account for the interconnecting channels. Further, we found that despite the basic regularity of the SBA-2 structure, it is necessary to allow for a distribution of the sizes of both the cavities and the channels. These size distributions were obtained by fitting the parameters of the model to the experimental adsorption data, revealing detailed structural information not previously known for this material. The channels were found to be 5-15 A in diameter, while the cavities were 40-50 A in diameter. There is some evidence that the distribution of channel sizes leads to a percolation effect whereby the pore structure is not equally accessible to all adsorptives.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7653-7658
Number of pages6
JournalLangmuir
Volume20
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Aug 2004

Keywords

  • MESOPOROUS MATERIALS
  • ACTIVATED CARBONS
  • NITROGEN ADSORPTION
  • MOLECULAR SIMULATION
  • SIZE DISTRIBUTIONS
  • SPHERICAL CAVITY
  • SILICEOUS MCM-41
  • BINARY-MIXTURES
  • DIOXIDE
  • METHANE

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