Chinese scientists pioneer new method to absorb oil spillsStaff Writer | April 7, 2017
Chinese scientists have found that graphene-wrapped sponges provide an effective and fast way to absorb spilled crude oil when heated with an applied electric current.
Science Heated with an applied electric current
The team wrapped porous material with a thin, waterproof graphene layer, put the coated sponge in water mixed with crude oil, and applied an electric current to the graphene to warm it up.
The process reduces the viscosity of crude oil, thus speeding up the oil-absorption time, the website said.
Crude oil spills in oceans have been frequent in recent years, damaging the environment and affecting the economy. The spilled oil is hard to collect and clean up via traditional technology.
It is believed that the new study may be widely used to treat oil spills in the future. ■