Hydrogels are three-dimensional, hydrophilic,
polymeric networks composed of homopolymers or copolymers and
are insoluble in water due to the presence of chemical or physical
cross-links. When hydrogels come in contact with aqueous solutions,
they can effectively sorb and retain the dissolved substances,
depending on the nature of the monomeric units comprising the
hydrogel. For this reason, hydrogels have been proposed in several
studies as water purification agents. At the present work anionic
hydrogels bearing negatively charged –COO- groups were prepared
and investigated. These gels are based on sodium acrylate (ANa),
either homopolymerized (poly(sodiumacrylate), PANa) or
copolymerized (P(DMAM-co-ANa)) with N,N Dimethylacrylamide
(DMAM). The hydrogels were used to extract some model organic
dyes from water. It is found that cationic dyes are strongly sorbed and
retained by the hydrogels, while sorption of anionic dyes was
negligible. In all cases it was found that both maximum sorption
capacity and equilibrium binding constant varied from one dye to the
other depending on the chemical structure of the dye, the presence of
functional chemical groups and the hydrophobic-hydrophilic balance.
Finally, the nonionic hydrogel of the homopolymer poly(N,Ndimethylacrylamide),
PDMAM, was also used for reasons of
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