NOV 01, 2018 08:00 AM PDT

Oil Absorbing Sponge Made from Wood

 

It has been eight years since the crude oil spill in the Mexico Gulf, but the shadow of aquatic petroleum contamination has never been far away. To battle this hard-to-clean-up environmental mess, scientists in China have come up with a novel wood-based material that can sponge away oil.

A piece of wood is nothing like a sponge. But using a light-weight, tropical wood material, the researchers removed its lignin and hemicellulose content via a chemical treatment and obtained a flexible, hollow, and lamella cellulose structure. After coating the interior of the wood sponge with hydrophobic molecules,  the grease magnet can selectively absorb 41 gram of oil versus 1 gram of water. Also, the sponge is highly reusable-- simply apply compression, the trapped content would be squeezed out and it is ready to soak up more oil.

Source: ACS via Youtube

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  • With years of experience in biomedical R & D, Daniel is also very into writing. He is constantly fascinated by what's happening in the world of science. He hopes to capture the public's interest and promote scientific literacy with his trending news articles.
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