Removal of diclofenac by adsorption process studied in free-base porphyrins Zr-metal organic frameworks (Zr-MOFs)

14 July 2023, Version 1
This content is a preprint and has not undergone peer review at the time of posting.


As the world population continues to grow, there is also a rising concern regarding the water pollution since this condition could negatively impact the supply of clean water. One of the most recent concerns is related to the pollution that comes from various pharmaceuticals, in particular non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) since they have been industrially produced at large scale and can be easily purchased as an over-the-counter medicine. Diclofenac is one of the most popular NSAIDs because of its high-effectiveness, which leads to its excessive consumption. Consequently, its presence in the water bodies is also continuously increasing. Adsorption process could then be employed as a highly effective method to address this issue. In comparison to other conventional adsorbents such as activated carbon, the use of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) as an alternative adsorbent is very attractive since it can offer various advantages such as tailorability and high adsorption capacity. In this study, the performance of three water-stable, free-base porphyrin MOFs assembled using zirconia-based nodes, namely MOF-525, MOF-545, and NU-902, for diclofenac adsorption was thoroughly investigated. Interestingly, although all the three free-base porphyrin MOFs are assembled using the same building block and have a similar specific surface area (based on the experimental argon physisorption and calculation based on non-localized density functional theory), their diclofenac adsorption capacity is substantially different from one another. It is found that the highest diclofenac adsorption capacity is shown by MOF-525, which has maximum capacity around 792 mg g-1. This is then followed by MOF-545 and NU-902 that has adsorption capacity around 591 and 486 mg g-1, respectively. Some possible adsorption mechanisms are then thoroughly discussed that might contribute to this phenomenon. Lastly, their performance is also compared with other MOFs that are also studied for this purpose to show their performance superiority not only in terms of adsorption capacity but also their affinity towards diclofenac molecule.


Free-base porphyrin metal organic frameworks

Supplementary materials

Supporting Information
The document contains the supporting information for the main manuscript.


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