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Apr 2023, Volume 17 Issue 4
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    Yanli Fang, Hui Wang, Xuyun Wang, Jianwei Ren, Rongfang Wang

    The bind-free carbon cloth-supported electrodes hold the promises for high-performance electrochemical capacitors with high specific capacitance and good cyclic stability. Considering the close connection between their performance and the amount of carbon material loaded on the electrodes, in this work, NiCo2O4 nanowires were firstly grown on the substrate of active carbon cloth to provide the necessary surface area in the longitudinal direction. Then, the quinone-rich nitrogen-doped carbon shell structure was formed around NiCo2O4 nanowires, and the obtained composite was used as electrode for electric double layer capacitor. The results showed that the composite electrode displayed an area-specific capacitance of 1794 mF∙cm–2 at the current density of 1 mA∙cm–2. The assembled symmetric electric double layer capacitor achieved a high energy density of 6.55 mW∙h∙cm–3 at a power density of 180 mW∙cm–3. The assembled symmetric capacitor exhibited a capacitance retention of 88.96% after 10000 charge/discharge cycles at the current density of 20 mA∙cm–2. These results indicated the potentials in the preparation of the carbon electrode materials with high energy density and good cycling stability.

    Junlei Xiao, Hua Zhang, Yifan Wang, Chunmei Zhang, Shuijian He, Shaohua Jiang

    Porous carbons with high specific area surfaces are promising electrode materials for supercapacitors. However, their production usually involves complex, time-consuming, and corrosive processes. Hence, a straightforward and effective strategy is presented for producing highly porous carbons via a self-activation procedure utilizing zinc gluconate as the precursor. The volatile nature of zinc at high temperatures gives the carbons a large specific surface area and an abundance of mesopores, which avoids the use of additional activators and templates. Consequently, the obtained porous carbon electrode delivers a satisfactory specific capacitance and outstanding cycling durability of 90.9% after 50000 cycles at 10 A∙g–1. The symmetric supercapacitors assembled by the optimal electrodes exhibit an acceptable rate capability and a distinguished cycling stability in both aqueous and ionic liquid electrolytes. Accordingly, capacitance retention rates of 77.8% and 85.7% are achieved after 50000 cycles in aqueous alkaline electrolyte and 10000 cycles in ionic liquid electrolyte. Moreover, the symmetric supercapacitors deliver high energy/power densities of 49.8 W∙h∙kg–1/2477.8 W∙kg–1 in the Et4NBF4 electrolyte, outperforming the majority of previously reported porous carbon-based symmetric supercapacitors in ionic liquid electrolytes.

    Xinyi Yang, Xiaolu Liu, Yanfang Liu, Xiao-Feng Wang, Zhongshan Chen, Xiangke Wang

    Radioactive iodine exhibits medical values in radiology, but its excessive emissions can cause environmental pollution. Thus, the capture of radioiodine poses significant engineering for the environment and medical radiology. The adsorptive capture of radioactive iodine by metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) has risen to prominence. In this work, a Th-based MOF (denoted as Th-BPYDC) was structurally designed and synthesized, consisting of [Th63-O)43-OH)4(H2O)6]12+ clusters, abundant bipyridine units, and large cavities that allowed guest molecules diffusion and transmission. Th-BPYDC exhibited the uptake capacities of 2.23 g·g−1 and 312.18 mg·g−1 towards I2 vapor and I2 dissolved in cyclohexane, respectively, surpassing its corresponding analogue Th-UiO-67. The bipyridine units boosted the adsorption performance, and Th-BPYDC showed good reusability with high stability. Our work thus opened a new way for the synthesis of MOFs to capture radioactive iodine.

    Junjun Cheng, Yitao Zhao, Guohao Xu, Peng Zhang, Xuedong Zhu, Fan Yang

    Alkylation of benzene with carbon dioxide and hydrogen to produce toluene and xylene could increase the added-value of surplus benzene as well as relieve environmental problems like green-house effect. In this work, the alkylation benzene with carbon dioxide and hydrogen reaction was proceeded by using the mixture of zinc-zirconium oxide and HZSM-5 as bifunctional catalyst. The equivalent of Zn/Zr = 1 displays the best catalytic performance at 425 °C and 3.0 MPa, and benzene conversion reaches 42.9% with a selectivity of 90% towards toluene and xylene. Moreover, the carbon dioxide conversion achieves 23.3% and the carbon monoxide selectivity is lower than 35%, indicating that more than 50% carbon dioxide has been effectively incorporated into the target product, which is the best result as far as we know. Combined with characterizations, it indicated that the Zn and Zr formed a solid solution under specific conditions (Zn/Zr = 1). The as-formed solid solution not only possesses a high surface area but also provides a large amount of oxygen vacancies. Additionally, the bifunctional catalyst has excellent stabilities that could keep operating without deactivation for at least 80 h. This work provides promising industrial applications for the upgrading of aromatics.

    Zexing Huang, Zhijuan Zeng, Xiaoting Zhu, Wenguang Zhao, Jing Lei, Qiong Xu, Yongjun Yang, Xianxiang Liu

    2,5-bis(hydroxymethyl)furan (BHMF) is an important monomer of polyester. Its oxygen-containing rigid ring structure and symmetrical diol functional group establish it as an alternative to petroleum-based monomer with unique advantages for the prodution of the degradable bio-based polyester materials. Herein, we prepared a boehmite-supported copper-oxide catalyst for the selective hydrogenation of 5-hydroxymethylfurfural into BHMF via catalytic transfer hydrogenation (CTH). Further, ethanol successfully replaced conventional high-pressure hydrogen as the hydrogen donor, with up to 96.9% BHMF selectivity achieved under suitable conditions. Through characterization and factor investigations, it was noted that CuO is crucial for high BHMF selectivity. Furthermore, kinetic studies revealed a higher by-product activation energy compared to that of BHMF, which explained the influence of reaction temperature on product distribution. To establish the catalyst structure-activity correlation, a possible mechanism was proposed. The copper-oxide catalyst deactivated following CTH because ethanol reduced the CuO, which consequently decreased the active sites. Finally, calcination of the catalyst in air recovered its activity. These results will have a positive impact on hydrogenation processes in the biomass industry.

    Meiyu Zheng, Zhenzhen Cui, Jing Zhang, Jing Fu, Zhiwen Wang, Tao Chen

    Acetoin is an important platform chemical, which has a wide range of applications in many industries. Halomonas bluephagenesis, a chassis for next generation of industrial biotechnology, has advantages of fast growth and high tolerance to organic acid salts and alkaline environment. Here, α-acetolactate synthase and α-acetolactate decarboxylase from Bacillus subtilis 168 were co-expressed in H. bluephagenesis to produce acetoin from pyruvate. After reaction condition optimization and further increase of α-acetolactate decarboxylase expression, acetoin production and yield were significantly enhanced to 223.4 mmol·L–1 and 0.491 mol·mol–1 from 125.4 mmol·L–1 and 0.333 mol·mol–1, respectively. Finally, the highest titer of 974.3 mmol·L–1 (85.84 g·L–1) of acetoin was accumulated from 2143.4 mmol·L–1 (188.6 g·L–1) of pyruvic acid within 8 h in fed-batch bioconversion under optimal reaction conditions. Moreover, the reusability of the cell catalysis was also tested, and the result illustrated that the whole-cell catalysis obtained 433.3, 440.2, 379.0, 442.8 and 339.4 mmol·L–1 (38.2, 38.8, 33.4, 39.0 and 29.9 g·L–1) acetoin in five repeated cycles under the same conditions. This work therefore provided an efficient H. bluephagenesis whole-cell catalysis with a broad development prospect in biosynthesis of acetoin.

    Zihuan Yu, Haiqing Yan, Chaonan Wang, Zheng Wang, Huiqin Yao, Rong Liu, Cheng Li, Shulan Ma

    High-performance and ultra-durable electrocatalysts are vital for hydrogen evolution reaction (HER) during water splitting. Herein, by one-pot solvothermal method, MoOx/Ni3S2 spheres comprising Ni3S2 nanoparticles inside and oxygen-deficient amorphous MoOx outside in situ grow on Ni foam (NF), to assembly the heterostructure composites of MoOx/Ni3S2/NF. By adjusting volume ratio of the solvents of ethanol to water, the optimized MoOx/Ni3S2/NF-11 exhibits the best HER performance, requiring an extremely low overpotential of 76 mV to achieve the current density of 10 mA∙cm‒2 (η10 = 76 mV) and an ultra-small Tafel slope of 46 mV∙dec‒1 in 0.5 mol∙L‒1 H2SO4. More importantly, the catalyst shows prominent high catalytic stability for HER (> 100 h). The acid-resistant MoOx wraps the inside Ni3S2/NF to ensure the high stability of the catalyst under acidic conditions. Density functional theory calculations confirm that the existing oxygen vacancy and MoOx/Ni3S2 heterostructure are both beneficial to the reduced Gibbs free energy of hydrogen adsorption (|∆GH*|) over Mo sites, which act as main active sites. The heterostructure effectively decreases the formation energy of O vacancy, leading to surface reconstruction of the catalyst, further improving HER performance. The MoOx/Ni3S2/NF is promising to serve as a highly effective and durable electrocatalyst toward HER.

    Xiao Han, Xiaoxuan Wang, Jiafang Wang, Yingjie Xie, Cuiwei Du, Chongfei Yu, Jinglan Feng, Jianhui Sun, Shuying Dong

    Metal–organic frameworks are recognized as promising multifunctional materials, especially metal–organic framework-based photocatalysts, which are considered to be ideal photocatalytic materials. Herein, a new type of UiO-66/MoSe2 composite was prepared using the solvothermal method. The optimum composite was selected by adjusting the mass ratio of UiO-66 and MoSe2. X-ray diffraction analysis showed that the mass ratio influenced the crystal plane exposure rate of the composite, which may have affected its photocatalytic performance. The composite is composed of ultra-thin flower-like MoSe2 that wrapped around cubic UiO-66, a structure that increases the abundance of active sites for reactions and is more conducive to the separation of carriers. The photocatalytic properties of the composite were evaluated by measuring the degradation rate of Rhodamine B and the catalyst’s ability to reduce Cr(VI)-containing wastewater under visible light irradiation. Rhodamine B was decolorized completely in 120 min, and most of the Cr(VI) was reduced within 150 min. The photochemical mechanism of the complex was studied in detail. The existence of Mo6+ and oxygen vacancies, in addition to the Z-type heterojunction promote the separation of electrons and holes, which enhances the photocatalytic effect.

    Da Guo, Guisheng Qi, Dong Chen, Jiabao Niu, Youzhi Liu, Weizhou Jiao

    Nitric oxide being a major gas pollutant has attracted much attention and various technologies have been developed to reduce NO emission to preserve the environment. Advanced persulfate oxidation technology is a workable and effective choice for wet flue gas denitrification due to its high efficiency and green advantages. However, NO absorption rate is limited and affected by mass transfer limitation of NO and aqueous persulfate in traditional reactors. In this study, a rotating packed bed (RPB) was employed as a gas–liquid absorption device to elevate the NO removal efficiency (ηNO) by aqueous persulfate ((NH4)2S2O8) activated by ferrous ethylenediaminetetraacetate (Fe2+-EDTA). The experimental results regarding the NO absorption were obtained by investigating the effect of various operating parameters on the removal efficiency of NO in RPB. Increasing the concentration of (NH4)2S2O8 and liquid–gas ratio could promoted the oxidation and absorption of NO while theηNO decreased with the increase of the gas flow and NO concentration. In addition, improving the high gravity factor increased the ηNO and the total volumetric mass transfer coefficient (KGα) which raise the ηNO up to more than 75% under the investigated system. These observations proved that the RPB can enhance the gas–liquid mass transfer process in NO absorption. The correlation formula between KGα and the influencing factors was determined by regression calculation, which is used to guide the industrial scale-up application of the system in NO removal. The presence of O2 also had a negative effect on the NO removal process and through electron spin resonance spectrometer detection and product analysis, it was revealed that Fe2+-EDTA activated (NH4)2S2O8 to produce •SO4, •OH and •O2, played a leading role in the oxidation of NO, to produce NO3 as the final product. The obtained results demonstrated a good applicable potential of RPB/PS/Fe2+-EDTA in the removal of NO from flue gases.

    Yitong Wang, Yue Zhang, Li Wang

    Amino-functionalized zirconia was synthesized by the co-condensation method using zirconium butanol and 3-aminopropyltriethoxy silane for the simultaneous removal of various impurities from aqueous 30% H2O2 solution. The results of Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) and Zeta potential showed that the content of N in amino-functionalized zirconia increased with the added amount of 3-aminopropyltriethoxy silane. Accordingly, the removal efficiency of total oxidizable carbon, phosphate and metallic ions from the H2O2 solution increased. The adsorbent with an N content of 1.62% exhibited superior adsorption performance. The removal efficiency of 82.7% for total oxidizable carbon, 34.2% for phosphate, 87.1% for Fe3+, 83.2% for Al3+, 55.1% for Ca2+ and 66.6% for Mg2+, with a total adsorption capacity of 119.6 mg·g–1, could be achieved. The studies conducted using simulated solutions showed that the adsorption process of phosphate on amino-functionalized zirconia is endothermic and spontaneous, and the behaviors could be well described by the pseudo-second-order model and Langmuir model with a maximum adsorption capacity of 186.7 mg·g–1. The characterizations of the spent adsorbents by Zeta potential, FTIR and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy revealed that the adsorption mechanism of phosphate is predominantly electrostatic attraction by the protonated functional groups and complementary ligand exchange with zirconium hydroxyl groups.

    Lan Lin, Lai Jiang, En Ren, Gang Liu

    Benefiting from the advantage of taking place in biological environments without interfering with an innate biochemical process, the bioorthogonal reaction that commonly contains the “bond formation” and “bond cleavage” system has been widely used in targeted therapy for a variety of tumors. Herein, several prominent cases based on the bioorthogonal reaction that tailoring the metabolic glycoengineering tactics to modified cells for cancer immunotherapy, and the innovative tactics for reducing the metal ions’ toxic and side effects with microneedle patches will be highlighted. Based on these applications, the complexities, potential pitfalls, and opportunities of bioorthogonal chemistry in future cancer therapy will be evaluated.