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Hoi Ki Cheung

VickieI did my first degree in Hong Kong at the City University of Hong Kong. I particularly enjoyed analytical chemistry modules on my course and decided to pursue my further career by doing the AS:MIT MSc programme at the University of Warwick . The first half of the year was taught courses and I was particularly excited by inorganic materials. I've chosen to do my research project in Dr. Walton's group.


Title of my Project

 Analysis of Molecular Separation Properties of Metal Organic Frameworks


Abstract of my Project

Metal organic frameworks are porous materials which have potential absorption properties. They consist of metal ions or metal ion clusters linked through coordinative bridges to form frameworks that may be one-dimensional, two-dimensional or three-dimensional in their connectivity.1 The versatile physical and chemical properties of MOFs may enable their application in hydrogen storage for fuel cells, selective carbon dioxide capture, catalytic cracking in oil industry and ion-exchange separation. 2-4


Benzothiophene, indole and benzothiazole are commonly found in crude oil. They are harmful to the marine environment and cause air pollution. MIL-53, a three-dimensional metal organic frameworks may be used to elimination them by adsorption. It can absorb small molecules in its linear diamond-shaped channels formed by parallel one-dimensional M(OH) chains (M = Fe3+, Al3+, Cr3+ ,Ga2+, Sc3+), linked together by 1,4-benzendicarboxylate (BDC) ligands. 5 In this project, the absorption properties of MIL-53(Fe)[H2O] for these nitrogen- and sulfur-containing molecules in heptane have been investigated using a variety of chemical analysis methods, such as UV-vis absorption spectroscopy, infrared spectroscopy, thermogravimetric analysis and X-ray powder diffraction.

 Top view of MIL-53(Fe)[H2O] Perpendicular view of MIL-53(Fe)[H2O]

Figure 1. Top view (left) and perpendicular view (right) of MIL-53(Fe)[H2O] structure taken from reference [6].



[1] Bruce, D. W.; O¡¯Hare, D; Walton, R. I. Porous Materials. 1st ed. Chichester : John Wiley & Sons Ltd, 2011.

[2] Hunger, M. Zeolites and Catalysis: Synthesis, Reaction and Applications. 1st ed. Weinheim: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, 2010.

[3] Custelcean, R.; Moyer, B. A. European Journal of Inorganic Chemistry, 2007, 1321-1340.

[4] Bruce, D. W.; O¡¯Hare, D; Walton, R. I. Energy Materials. 1st ed. Chichester : John Wiley & Sons Ltd, 2011.

[5] Neimark, A. V.; Coudert, F. X.; Triguero, C.; Boutin, A.; Fuchs, A. H.; Beurroies, I.; Denoyel, R. Langmuir 2011, 27, 4734-4741.

[6] Millange, F.; Guillou, N. ; Walton, R. I. ; Gren¡¡¡¡ì¬¡¡¡¡ì¬che, J. M. ; Margiolaki, I. ; F¡¡¡¡ì¬¦rey, G. Chem. Commun., 2008, 4732-4734.