Large- and small-nanopore silica prepared with a short-chain cationic fluorinated surfactant

Bing Tan, Hans Joachim Lehmler, Sandhya M. Vyas, Barbara L. Knutson, Stephen E. Rankin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


A cationic partially fluorinated surfactant with four carbons in the chain 1-(3,3,4,4,4-pentafluorobutyl)pyridinium chloride is employed as a structure-directing agent to synthesize nanoporous silica. Samples are prepared in dilute ammonia solutions at room temperature with a range of surfactant:Si ratios. The sample with the largest surfactant:Si ratio forms particles with wormhole-like micropores with an average diameter of 1.6 nm, which corresponds to the anticipated small size of the surfactant aggregates. On the other hand, the sample with the smallest surfactant:Si ratio forms a gel that, upon drying, has uniform 11.1 nm pores. The formation and stabilization of the latter large-mesopore structure is unusual for a sample prepared and dried under ambient conditions, and may reflect favourable roles of the surfactant both in inducing gelation and in stabilizing the pore structure during drying.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S502-S507
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • Chemistry (all)
  • Materials Science (all)
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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