Authors: Molina, MA; Habib, NR; Diaz, I; Sanchez-Sanchez, M

Catal. Today. vol: 394. page: 0920-5861.
Date: jul-01. 2022.
Doi: 10.1016/j.cattod.2021.10.019.

Metal-Organic Frameworks (MOFs) are extensively used in different applications, including heterogeneous catalysis given the fact that practically any center can be designed on demand and is accessible for reactants. Just like any other microporous catalysts, the limited diffusion of reactants and products is an endemic drawback also in MOFs. To face it, the use of nanocrystalline MOFs is a proven alternative, which in addition is often accompanied by improvements in sustainability of synthesis procedure (room temperature, water as solvent, etc.). This work goes further adding surfactant-induced mesoporosity to the nanocrystallinity of these materials. As a proof of concept, the nanocrystalline NH2-MIL-53(Al) and CTA(+) (cetyltrimethylammonium) were selected as the sustainably-prepared nanocrystalline MOF and a cationic surfactant, respectively. The MOF system is formed by massive and practically instantaneous precipitation entrapping the surfactant, which generates mesopores in the aggregates. The simple washing with ethanol at room temperature leads to a nanocrystalline NH2-MIL-53(Al) material containing outstanding intercrystalline mesoporosity. The so-obtaining hierarchically porous NH2-MIL-53(Al) is able to effectively remove bisphenol A (BPA) from aqueous solution (more than 90% of a 25 ppm BPA aqueous solution in just 10 min at room temperature), duplicating the performance given by its counterpart nanocrystalline NH2-MIL-53(Al) prepared in the absence of surfactant..