Swatch Test of Protective Cloth Coated with Graphene-Based Nanomaterials against Chemical Warfare Agents

D. Ka, S. Jang, H. Park, J. Seo, H. Jung, Y. Jin
Agency for Defense Development,
Korea

Keywords: chemical warfare agent protection, graphene oxide, Zr-based MOF, ZTC

Summary:

Chemical warfare agents (CWAs) are extremely lethal even in a small amount, so they have been used in wars and terrorist attacks over the world. There are a number of protective suits for the soldiers and civilian rapid response personnel to reduce the hazard from CWAs. However, the materials in supplied protective clothes have some critical shortcomings in performance, weight, and stability. Graphene-based nanomaterials which have many outstanding physical and chemical properties can provide solutions for improving those critical drawbacks in protective clothes. Here, graphene oxide (GO) based nanocomposite and zeolite-template carbon (ZTC) were investigated. GO is very easy to disperse and be functionalized due to diverse oxygen functional groups. It is known that composites with GO and some porous materials can show better adsorption properties with improved porosities and stability. Here, UiO-66-NH2/GO; a Zr-based metal–organic framework and GO composite was chosen as a promising adsorbent against CWAs. This composite can have higher specific surface area, micropore volume, and water resistance by graphene oxide with no sacrifices of its crystallinity. In addition, X-ZTC, one of cheap ZTC which is also called 3D graphene, was used to capture CWAs. ZTC is organized with two-dimensional carbon layers in three-dimensional structure with complicated pore network. It has ultrahigh surface area about thousands of square meter per one gram with narrow pore-size distribution and high accessibility on surface site, which shows a high potency in catalytic area. UiO-66-NH2/GO and X-ZTC were coated on circle-shaped polyurethane foam by dip coating method into high density of UiO-66-NH2/GO and X-ZTC aqueous solution, respectively, then it was dried in 120 ℃. After several cycles of coating procedure, a large amount of a graphene-based material can be loaded on polyurethane. The permeability of CWAs was analyzed by an aerosol vapor liquid assessment group (AVLAG) swatch test. Soman (GD) and sulfur mustard (HD) were injected on the coated polyurethane samples, then they are equipped in dual swatch test cells under specific air flow for 24 hours. The penetrated amount of CWAs was analyzed into gas chromatography (GC). As a result, polyurethanes coated with graphene-based nanomaterials could block more CWAs than activated carbon with much lighter density as shown in additional documents. The amount of penetrated GD was much lower than the criteria of military CWA protective suits. Our study reveals the possibility of graphene-based nanomaterials in CWA protection.