Synthesis, gas adsorption and reliable pore size estimation of zeolitic imidazolate framework-7 using CO2 and water adsorption

Mahdi Niknam Shahrak, Morteza Niknam Shahrak, Akbar Shahsavand, Nasser Khazeni, Xiaofei Wu, Shuguang Deng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Reliable estimation of the pore size distribution (PSD) in porous materials such as metal–organic frameworks (MOFs) and zeolitic imidazolate frameworks (ZIFs) is crucial for accurately assessing adsorption capacity and corresponding selectivity. In this study, the so-called zeolitic imidazolate framework-7 (ZIF-7) is successfully synthesized via relatively fast and convenient microwave technique. The morphology and structure of the obtained MOF were characterized by XRD, SEM and N2 and CO2 adsorption/desorption isotherms at 77 K and 0 °C respectively. Then, to determine the PSD of the fabricated MOF, carbon dioxide isotherms are experimentally measured at various temperatures up to atmospheric pressure. Afterward, the experimental CO2 isotherms data are utilized in two recently proposed in-house algorithms of SHN1 and SHN2 to extract the true PSD of manufactured ZIF-7. The obtained results revealed that median pore diameter of the fabricated ZIF-7 is estimated around 0.404 nm and 0.370 nm by using CO2 isotherms at 273 K and 298 K respectively. These values are in good agreement with the real pore diameter of 0.42 nm. Moreover, experimental data of water adsorption isotherms over four different MOFs, borrowed from literature, are employed to illustrate further effectiveness of the above algorithms on successful determination of the corresponding pore size distributions. All predicted PSDs are proved to be in good agreement with those obtained from independent methods such as topology and morphology studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)595-601
Number of pages7
JournalChinese Journal of Chemical Engineering
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2017


  • Adsorption
  • CO capture
  • Gas
  • Metal–organic framework
  • Size distribution
  • ZIF-7

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)


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