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Removal of methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) with Nafion.

Journal of hazardous materials (2006-11-18)
Hsing-Lung Lien, Wei-Xian Zhang
ABSTRACT

A solid organic polymer, Nafion, is tested for the removal of methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) in water. Nafion with perfluorosulfonic acid backbone and terminal sulfonic acid groups has a surface acidity similar to 100% sulfuric acid, and has been commonly used as a strong-acid catalyst in many organic reactions. Sorption and subsequent transformation of MTBE were observed in batch experiments. The transformation of MTBE by porous nanocomposite Nafion SAC-13 to tert-butyl alcohol (TBA), acetone, isobutene and probably methanol was found. Subsequent transformation of TBA to acetone was also observed. Results suggest that transformational pathways may include hydrolysis, dehydrogenation and oxidation. Dissolved oxygen is needed for the oxidation of isobutene to acetone. As Nafion is insoluble in water, chemically stable, and regenerable, its use in packed-bed reactors for MTBE removal looks promising.

MATERIALS
Product Number
Brand
Product Description

Sigma-Aldrich
2-Methylpropene, 99%