Hydronium-promoted equilibrium mechanism for the alkali metal cation exchange reaction in Na-4-mica

Man Park, Hong Jin Kim, Kwang Seop Kim, Owen W. Duckworth, Sridhar Komarneni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


A general stoichiometric cation exchange mechanism does not fully explain the unique exchange behaviors of Na-4-mica, the most highly charged swelling 2:1 phyllosilicate. Herein, we present for the first time a novel model of hydronium-promoted equilibrium for the cation exchange reaction of highly charged swelling 2:1 phyllosilicates with alkali metal cations. The exchange reaction of Na-4-mica with alkali metal cations revealed that adsorbed cations undergo further exchange with hydronium ions to result in the unprecedented back-release and position rearrangement of adsorbed cations. During the exchange reaction, hydronium ions play a key role as not competitive but stabilizing cation. Stabilization is accomplished through replacing half of the adsorbed cations and consequently relocating their position. Therefore, this hydronium-promoted equilibrium mechanism would provide a novel intellectual framework not only for understanding cation exchange reactions of various highly charged phyllosilicates but also for exploring their potential for new applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18678-18683
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number35
StatePublished - Sep 6 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • General Energy
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films


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