Permeation of a cationic polyelectrolyte into mesoporous silica Part 3. Using adsorption isotherms to elucidate streaming potential results

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Research units

  • North Carolina State University


Parts 1 and 2 of this series showed that the streaming potential of silica gel particles in aqueous media can be profoundly affected by their exposure to solutions of a cationic polyelectrolyte. The extent of the change in streaming potential depended on such variables as pH, salt concentration, polyelectrolyte molecular mass and concentration, pore size, and time. However, questions arose concerning the relationship between the observed changes in streaming potential and the net amount of adsorbed polyelectrolyte. Some preliminary experiments suggested that, compared to adsorption tests, the streaming potential method may be much more sensitive to the permeation of minor amounts of oligomeric impurities into the network of mesopores in the substrate. The present article follows up on these findings, evaluating adsorption isotherms for the same systems that earlier had been examined by the streaming potential method. In contrast to the earlier work, it was possible to interpret the isotherms based on a model in which adsorbate interacts with a set of equivalent, non-interacting adsorption sites. The kinetics of adsorption were time-dependent and diffusion limited. The polymer adsorbed amount was controlled by both the pore size and the surface area. The highest adsorption amount, based on mass of the substrate, was achieved when using silica gel having an intermediate pore size (15 nm) at a relatively high solution concentration of very-low-mass polyelectrolyte. The results could be fit well to a Langmuir model of the adsorption process. (C) 2011 Published by Elsevier B.V.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalColloids and Surfaces A: Physicochemical and Engineering Aspects
Issue number1-3
Publication statusPublished - 20 May 2011
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

    Research areas

  • Polyelectrolytes, Diffusion, Porous media, Adsorption isotherms, Adsorption kinetics, Silica gel, CHARGED POROUS SUBSTRATE, CELLULOSE FIBERS, DIFFUSION, PARTICLES, PROTEINS, POLYMERS, DYNAMICS, SURFACE

ID: 10403970