Current State and Perspectives of Exfoliated Zeolites

MDR Open Deposited

Zeolites are highly efficient industrial catalysts and sorbents with microporous
framework structures. Approximately 10% of the frameworks, but eventually
all in the long run, have produced both 3D crystals and 2D layers. The latter
can be intercalated and expanded like all 2D materials but proved difficult to
exfoliate directly into suspensions of monolayers in solution as precursors for
unique synthetic opportunities. Successful exfoliations have been reported
recently and are overviewed in this perspective article. The discussion
highlights 3 primary challenges in this field, namely finding suitable 2D zeolite
preparations that exfoliate directly in high yield, proving uniform layer
thickness in solution and identifying applications to exploit the unique
synthetic capabilities and properties of exfoliated zeolite monolayers. Four
zeolites have been confirmed to exfoliate directly into monolayers: 3 with
known structures—MWW, MFI, and RWR and one unknown, bifer with a unit
cell close to ferrierite. The exfoliation into monolayers is confirmed by the
combination of 5–6 characterization techniques including AFM, in situ and
in-plane XRD, and microscopies. The promising areas of development are
oriented films and membranes, intimately mixed zeolite phases, and
hierarchical nanoscale composites with other active species like nanoparticles
and clusters that are unfeasible by solid state processes.

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Date published
  • 25/01/2024
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  • Version of record (Published version)