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Iron-montmorillonite clays as active sorbents for the decontamination of hazardous chemical warfare agents

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Abstract

A class of heterogeneous catalysts based on commercial bentonite from natural origin, containing at least 80 wt% of montmorillonite clay, was designed to transform selectively and under mild conditions toxic organosulfur and organophosphorus chemical warfare agents into non-noxious products with a reduced impact on health and environment. The bentonite from the natural origin was modified by introducing iron species and acid sites in the interlayer space, aiming to obtain a sorbent with strong catalytic oxidising and hydrolytic properties. The catalytic performance of these materials was evaluated in the oxidative abatement of (2-chloroethyl)ethyl sulfide (CEES), a simulant of sulfur mustard, in the presence of aqueous hydrogen peroxide as an oxidant. A new decontamination formulation was, moreover, proposed and obtained by mixing sodium perborate, as a solid oxidant, to iron-bentonite catalysts. Solid-phase decontamination tests, performed on a cotton textile support contaminated with organosulfide and organophosphonate simulant agents revealed the good activity of the solid formulation, especially in the in situ detoxification of blistering agents. Tests carried out on the real blistering warfare agent, sulfur mustard (HD agent), showed that, thanks to the co-presence of the iron-based clay together with the solid oxidant component, a good decontamination of the test surface from the real warfare agent could be achieved (80% contaminant degradation, under ambient conditions, in 24 h).

Graphical abstract: Iron-montmorillonite clays as active sorbents for the decontamination of hazardous chemical warfare agents

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Publication details

The article was received on 13 Oct 2017, accepted on 29 Jan 2018 and first published on 29 Jan 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7DT03859C
Citation: Dalton Trans., 2018, Advance Article
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    Iron-montmorillonite clays as active sorbents for the decontamination of hazardous chemical warfare agents

    F. Carniato, C. Bisio, C. Evangelisti, R. Psaro, V. Dal Santo, D. Costenaro, L. Marchese and M. Guidotti, Dalton Trans., 2018, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C7DT03859C

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