Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Aleksey Vasiliev

Committee Members

Greg Bishop, Marina Roginskaya


Mesoporous silica gel containing embedded phosphotungstic acid (PTA) was synthesized by sol-gel co-condensation of tetraethyl orthosilicate with PTA in acidic media. The obtained material had high Brunauer-Emmett-Teller Theory (BET) surface area and pore volume. A characteristic band of the Keggin structure of PTA was present in its FT-IR spectrum while its X-ray diffraction patterns were absent. This proved the embedding of PTA on a sub-molecular level and not as a second phase. Acidic sites were determined by neutralization with base in aprotic solvent, followed by titration of the remaining base with an acid. The material demonstrated high adsorption capacity of Cs. Kinetic studies showed that the adsorption data correlates strongly with the pseudo-second order model. At higher temperatures, the nature of adsorption fit the Langmuir model extremely well. The obtained results can be used in the development of an effective adsorbent for clean-up of water contaminated by radioactive 137Cs.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.