Synthesis of two-dimensional triazine covalent organic frameworks at ambient conditions to detect and remove water pollutants
M. Salahvarzi, A. Setaro, K. Ludwig, P. Amsalem, T. Schultz, E. Mehdipour, M. Nemati, C. Chong, S. Reich, M. Adeli – 2023
Synthesis of fully triazine frameworks (C3N3) by metal catalyzed reactions at high temperatures results in carbonized and less-defined structures. Moreover, metal impurities affect the physicochemical, optical and electrical properties of the synthesized frameworks, dramatically. In this work, two-dimensional C3N3 (2DC3N3) has been synthesized by in situ catalyst-free copolymerization of sodium cyanide and cyanuric chloride, as cheap and commercially available precursors, at ambient conditions on gram scale. Reaction between sodium cyanide and cyanuric chloride resulted in electron-poor polyfunctional intermediates, which converted to 2DC3N3 with several hundred micrometers lateral size at ambient conditions upon [2 + 2+2] cyclotrimerization. 2DC3N3 sheets, in bulk and individually, showed strong fluorescence with 63% quantum yield and sensitive to small objects such as dyes and metal ions. The sensitivity of 2DC3N3 emission to foreign objects was used to detect low concentration of water impurities. Due to the high negative surface charge (-37.7 mV) and dispersion in aqueous solutions, they demonstrated a high potential to remove positively charged dyes from water, exemplified by excellent removal efficiency (>99%) for methylene blue. Taking advantage of the straightforward production and strong interactions with dyes and metal ions, 2DC3N3 was integrated in filters and used for the fast detection and efficient removal of water impurities.