Pore size assessment of nanoporous alumina using absorption of laser light
GAs in Scattering Media Absorption Spectroscopy (GASMAS) is used to correlate the average pore size within mesoporous alumina samples to the broadening of the absorption lines of oxygen gas and water vapor entrapped within the pores. Collisions of gas molecules cause extra broadening to the absorption linewidths if the average time between collisions is smaller than the inverse of the linewidth of the absorption line. A gas molecule can collide either with another molecule or with the walls of its container. Hence, for a gas entrapped within a porous medium that has an average pore size comparable to the mean free path of intermolecular collisions, collisions of the gas molecules with the walls of the pores can cause extra broadening. This extra broadening is used to estimate the average size of the pores. At atmospheric pressure, the mean free path of intermolecular collision is about 100 nm and thus broadening due to collision with the walls of the pores should be noticeable for pore sizes of order of 100 nm or less. In this work, high resolution tunable singlemode diode lasers at 761 nm and 936 nm are employed to study the absorption from oxygen gas and water vapor, respectively. The samples used are made from porous pure 𝛼-alumina with average pore sizes ranging from 50 to 150 nm.
Abdulaziz M. Aljalal
King Fahd Univ. of Petroleum & Minerals (Saudi Arabia)