(654f) Design of a Multicatalyst Polyelectrolyte Membrane for Decomposition of Chemical Warfare Agents

Authors: 
Landers, J. M., Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Colon, J., Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Vishnyakov, A., Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Neimark, A. V., Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

We are developing novel multi-catalyst polyelectrolyte membranes (MC-PEM) that may be used as self-detoxifying breathable protective membranes that permeate water but block and eventually decompose chemical warfare agents (CWA). MC-PEM are formed by segregating polyelectrolytes that host catalytic metal oxide nanoparticles within the membrane designed to facilitate hydrolysis of G-agent CWA, while simultaneously supporting the oxidation of H-agents by polyoxometalate nanoparticles supported on the exterior. For the interior, various metal oxides have been grown in-situ in the polyelectrolyte film as a function of initial salt concentration, metal ion type, and growth temperature and characterization of their nanostructure is performed via X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscope, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. Their catalytic ability towards decomposition of nerve agents is explored using nerve agent simulant dimethylmethylphosphonate (DMMP) with NMR and droplet permeation measurements. Meanwhile the exterior coating has been optimized by dispersing POM nanoparticles in various solvents prior to being sprayed on, in order to achieve a homogeneous and non-aggregated dispersed film.