Monte Carlo Simulation of Water Adsorption in Hydrophobic MFI Zeolites with Hydrophilic Sites

Ahunbay M. G.

LANGMUIR, vol.27, no.8, pp.4986-4993, 2011 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 27 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2011
  • Doi Number: 10.1021/la200685c
  • Journal Name: LANGMUIR
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.4986-4993
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: No


The effect of strong and weak hydrophilic sites, Al atoms with associated extraframework Na cations and silanol nests, respectively, in high-silica MFI zeolites on water adsorption was investigated using Monte Carlo simulations. For this purpose, a new empirical model to represent potential energy interactions between water molecules and the MFI framework was developed, which reproduced the hydrophobic characteristics of a siliceous MFI-type zeolite, silicalite-1, with both the vapor-phase adsorption isotherm and heats of adsorption at 298 K being in good agreement with experimental data. The proposed model is also compatible with previous hydrocarbon potential models and can be used in the adsorption simulations of VOC-water mixtures. Adsorption simulations revealed that strongly hydrophilic Al sites in Na-ZSM-5 zeolites coordinate two water molecules per site at low coverage, which promotes water clustering in the vicinity of these sites. However, weakly hydrophilic silanol nests in silicalite-1 are in coordination with a single water molecule per site, which does not affect the adsorption capacity significantly as expected. However, even in the presence of 0.125 silanol nest per unit cell, the increase in the heat of adsorption at low coverage is drastic.