One-pot fabrication of robust hydrophobia and superoleophilic cotton fabrics for effective oil-water separation

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A one-pot sonochemical irradiation method was developed for the fabrication of superhydrophobic and superoleophilic cotton fabric from a solution consisting of branched silica nanoparticles and tetraethoxysilane-dodecyltrimethoxysilane sol. The silica/sol-coated cotton fabric could be wetted by liquids of low surface tension, but was water repellent with a water contact angle of 159 ± 1.2° and water shedding angle of 6 ± 0.8°. The as-prepared cotton fabric could be used as effective materials for the separation of oil from water with separation efficiency as high as 98.2% and maintained separation efficiency above 94% after 30 separation cycles for the kerosene-water mixture. Moreover, the superhydrophobic and superoleophilic cotton fabric could maintain stable superhydrophobicity after treatment with strong acidic and alkali solutions, and harsh mechanical damage. Therefore, this reported robust superhydrophobic cotton fabric exhibits encouraging practical application for oil-water separation.

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The authors are thankful for the financial support of Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province of China (Grants BK20150072).

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Correspondence to Chengguo Liu or Yonghong Zhou.

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Shang, Q., Liu, C. & Zhou, Y. One-pot fabrication of robust hydrophobia and superoleophilic cotton fabrics for effective oil-water separation. J Coat Technol Res 15, 65–75 (2018).

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  • Superhydrophobic
  • Superoleophilic
  • Cotton fabric
  • Sol-gel
  • Oil-water separation