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Thermal Processing, Strategies and Characterization of Sustainable Nanomaterials


Thermal and chemical treatments of bio-based materials have been explored for their possible applications in chemistry and materials science as due to their immense abundance and variety. By selecting a synthetic target and picking an amenable bio-based precursor a process can be developed while exploring the underlying chemistries that make it possible. Pretreatment of lignocellulosic biomass to break down the material into its monosaccharides has been researched extensively for its potential to increase yields in biofuel production due to the abundance of lignocellulosic biomass waste. Often the byproducts of this process can limit the yields of ethanol in bioreactors by making other uses of the waste material worth exploring for technologies such as cheap functional poly- meric materials. By adjusting these classic aqueous treatment methods, selecting particu- lar metal ion precursors and applying a drying and chemically reductive heat treatment a variety of porous carbohydrate-based polymeric materials were generated for different uses including oil cleanup, sensors and battery materials. Syntheses of amorphous car- bon/metal frameworks were studied in situ using UV-vis spectroscopy and strong base

via titration as well as %Brix analysis. Thermogravimetric analysis was used to study the reductive heat treatment step in the synthesis process and to characterize products of pyroly- sis methods used. The solid structures and composition of generated polymeric materials were studied using FTIR, Raman and EDXA. SEM and HRTEM were used to study the microstructure and nanostructure of these materials. These materials were found to ex- hibit a variety of properties related to the metals they were produced with and the types of carbohydrates used to prepare them.

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