Self-templated microwave-assisted hydrothermal synthesis of two-dimensional holey hydroxyapatite nanosheets for efficient heavy metal removal

  • Yiping Su
  • Jing Wang
  • Shun LiEmail author
  • Jianhua Zhu
  • Weishu LiuEmail author
  • Zuotai ZhangEmail author
Research Article


Heavy metals have caused serious environmental problems and threat to human health. Ultrathin and holey two-dimensional (2D) nanosheets have recently drawn significant attention as superb adsorbent material to remove heavy metal ions due to their unique physicochemical properties. Herein, we report a self-template-directed ultrafast reaction route to synthesis porous hydroxyapatite (Ca10(PO4)6(OH)2) nanosheets via a microwave-assisted hydrothermal method using poly(allylamine hydrochloride) as an additive. The resulting hydroxyapatite nanosheets showed a high specific surface area (92.9 m2 g1) and excellent adsorption performance for various heavy metal ions including Pb(II), Cu(II), and Cd(II), with maximum adsorption capacities of 210.5, 31.6, and 24.9 mg g1, respectively. The adsorption kinetics fitted well with the pseudo-second-order equation and the equilibrium data showed a high correlation coefficient with the Langmuir model. Based on the experimental results and analysis, we can conclude that the sorption of heavy metal ions with the hydroxyapatite nanosheets mainly attributes to surface complexation and cation exchange. The present synthetic strategy allows the fast and massive production of porous hydroxyapatite ultrathin nanosheets and may also potentially be applicable to the fabrication of other metal phosphates with assembled or hierarchical porous structures towards various applications such as water purification.


Heavy metal adsorption Holey hydroxyapatite nanosheets Self-templating synthesis Microwave synthesis 


Funding information

This work was supported by the Shenzhen Science and Technology Innovation Committee (Grant No. JCYJ20170817111443306, JCYJ20170412154335393, and KQTD2016022619584022). Additional supports were provided by the Guangdong Province Universities and Colleges Pearl River Scholar Funded Scheme 2018, Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Soil and Groundwater Pollution Control (Grant No. 2017B030301012), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 21571004).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

11356_2019_6160_MOESM1_ESM.docx (6.8 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 7011 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Soil and Groundwater Pollution ControlSouthern University of Science and TechnologyShenzhenChina
  2. 2.Beijing Key Lab of New Energy Materials and Technology, School of Materials Science and EngineeringUniversity of Science and Technology BeijingBeijingChina
  3. 3.Academy for Advanced Interdisciplinary StudiesSouthern University of Science and TechnologyShenzhenChina
  4. 4.Anhui Province Key Laboratory of Metallurgical Emission Reduction and Resources, Metallurgical Reduction and Comprehensive Utilization of Resources of Key Laboratory of Ministry of EducationAnhui University of TechnologyMaanshanChina
  5. 5.Department of Materials Science and EngineeringSouthern University of Science and TechnologyShenzhenChina

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