Annalisa Pola and Alessandra de Folly dâ�?�?Auris
Eni S.p.A, Italy
Scientific Tracks Abstracts: Trends in Green chem
Oil spill events required efficient and rapid response by authorities and operating staff. The emergency management is not simple and usually is affected by a large consumption of materials and high operative costs. The optimization of the adsorbents is a starting point to reduce these costs. In this study, a graphene-based material (called Grafysorber�?®, produced by Directa Plus S.p.A) was used inside adsorbent devices (barriers and pillows) to treat waters containing an oily separated phase. Grafysorber�?® is a superexpanded graphite with a production apparent density of about 2.5 g/L. Three different kind of oils were tested: kerosene, diesel fuel and crude oil, to understand if there is a relationship between viscosity and sorption capacity. In addition, reusability of each device was evaluated. Little pillows of about 10*10 cm were used for adsorption tests. Results showed that the greater is the viscosity, the greater is the amount of oil sorbed; 50.8 g/g for kerosene, 76.5 g/g for diesel fuel, 81.78 g/g for crude oil. Grafysorber�?® pillows can be reused, after simple squeezing, for about 4-5 times. A progressive decrease of adsorption capacity was detected. Polypropylene, the standard adsorbent material used worldwide in case of water oil spill clean-up activities, showed a sorption capacity at least six times lower than Grafysorber�?®. The effect of the waves was considered, using diesel fuel, in a 1*5 meters tank, and small adsorbent barriers (7.5 cm diameter and 50 cm length). Water motion caused an increase in the saturationâ�?�?s speed but also an increase of retained water both for Grafysorber�?® and for Polypropylene barriers. A dropping phase of 5 min is necessary for Grafysorber�?® and polypropylene devices to favor the water expulsion from the adsorbent device. Anyway, it has been demonstrated that Grafysorber�?® retains on average the 50% less of water than polypropylene.
Annalisa Pola graduated in Environmental Science (University of Insubria – Como – Italy) and is an Environmental Application Manager at Directa Plus S.p.A. Directa Plus is one of the largest producers and suppliers of graphene-based products for use in consumer and industrial markets worldwide.