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Oil Spill Hero? Super Sponge Absorbs Only Oil, Leaves Behind Cleaned Water

Rodrigo Mejia

Synthetic sponges are useful in oil cleanups because of their wholesale soaking ability. To make the process more efficient, researchers at the Chinese Academy of Science have found a way to turn ordinary polyurethane sponges into "oil-only" super absorbing dynamos. By adhering polyprrole to the sponge surface, the team was able to produce a sponge that not only cleaned up petroleum, but left behind the "cleaned" water it was mixed into. Costs of chemicals keep the finding to small-scale uses.

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