“An investigation on the structural stability of ZIF-8 in water versus water-derived oxidative species in aqueous environment”


Niladri Talukder, Yudong Wang, Bharath Babu Nunna, Xiao Tong, Eon Soo Lee (2023/12)

Volume 366, 112934, Microporous and Mesoporous Materials


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The zeolitic-imidazolate-framework-8 (ZIF-8) is one of the extensively studied metal-organic frameworks (MOF) materials because of its unique structure. For its potential applicability in numerous fields, it becomes crucial to have detailed studies on the structural stability of ZIF-8, especially in aqueous environments. A number of studies have been conducted to investigate the breakdown process of the ZIF-8 structure in water; which is known as the hydrolysis of ZIF-8. However, those studies reported different opposing experimental observations on the role of water on the structural stability of ZIF-8, which created obscurity in understanding this phenomenon. This study explored the effects of different water-derived species on the structural stability of ZIF-8; specifically, examined the effects of only water and water with different oxidative species that may be generated by water molecules’ dissociation under external energy or catalyst presence. To this effort, we experimentally probed the physical and chemical structural changes of ZIF-8 in DI water and three different solutions of hydrogen peroxides (H2O2); taking H2O2 as the source of oxidative species. To assess the changes in elemental compositions, chemical bonds, functional groups, crystal structure, and morphology, all the samples were analyzed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), energy-dispersive x-ray (EDX) spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscope, X-ray diffractometer (XRD), and scanning electron microscope (SEM). Significant structural changes in ZIF-8 occurred mainly in the presence of oxidative species in water. Notably, oxidative species’ concentration exceeding 1 M heightened the deformation of the ZIF-8 structure.