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Cotton fiber functionalized with 2D covalent organic frameworks for iodine capture

  • Yongqiang LiEmail author
  • Yarong Li
  • Qinghua Zhao
  • Li Li
  • Run Chen
  • Chiyang He
Original Research


By using a rapid cryogenic reaction, cotton fiber was covalently functionalized with imine-linked two-dimensional covalent organic frameworks (2D COFs), which was synthesized via an imine condensation reaction between 1,3,5-tris(4-aminophenyl)benzene and terephthaldehyde. The resulting functionalized cotton (COFs@cotton) was characterized by fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, powder X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscope, thermo-gravimetric analysis, nitrogen adsorption–desorption analysis and elemental analysis. The presence of a lot of imine functional groups in combination with dispersed mesoporous holes results in rapid adsorption rate and relatively high iodine affinity with uptake capacities up to 533.9 mg/g, which was much higher than that of untreated cotton. In addition, COFs@cotton also shows remarkable capability as absorbent for iodine in solution. The adsorbed iodine can be completely extracted from COFs@cotton by being washed with ethanol, permitting the simple reuse of adsorbent. This new functionalization approach can be applied to different kind of imine-linked COFs, and the corresponding adsorbents show more extensive practical application prospect for iodine capture.

Graphic abstract


Cotton fiber Covalent organic framework Covalent grafting Rapid capture Iodine 



This work was financially supported by the National Nature Science Foundation of China (No. 21277106), the Nature Science Foundation of Hubei Province (No. 2017CFA026) and the innovation project of Wuhan Textile University (No. X201910495001). The contributions of all former and current lab members and students (Minhui Xie, Tiantian Xion and Maokun Tan) were thankfully acknowledged.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The author declares that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yongqiang Li
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yarong Li
    • 2
  • Qinghua Zhao
    • 3
  • Li Li
    • 1
  • Run Chen
    • 1
  • Chiyang He
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Chemistry and Chemical EngineeringWuhan Textile University, Hubei Key Laboratory of Biomass Fibers and Eco-dyeing and FinishingWuhanPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Plant Pathology Department, College of Plant Science and TechnologyHuazhong Agricultural UniversityWuhanPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.College of Materials Science and EngineeringWuhan Textile UniversityWuhanPeople’s Republic of China

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