Inorganic Chemistry, Vol.56, No.19, 11804-11809, 2017
Degradation of Paraoxon and the Chemical Warfare Agents VX, Tabun, and Soman by the Metal-Organic Frameworks UiO-66-NH2, MOF-808, NU-1000, and PCN-777
In recent years, Zr-based metal organic frameworks (MOFs) have been developed that facilitate catalytic degradation of toxic organophosphate agents, such as chemical warfare agents (CWAs). Because of strict regulations, experiments using live agents are not possible for most laboratories and, as a result, simulants are used in the majority of cases. Reports that employ real CWAs are scarce and do not cover the whole spectrum of agents. We here present a comparative study in which UiO-66-NH2, NU-1000, MOF-808, and PCN-777 are evaluated for their effectiveness in the degradation of paraoxon and the chemical warfare agents tabun, VX, and soman, in N-ethylmorpholine buffer (pH 10) as well as in pure water. All MOFs showed excellent ability to degrade the agents under basic conditions. It was further disclosed that tabun is degraded by different mechanisms depending on the conditions. The presence of an amine, either as part of the MOF structure (UiO-66-NH2) or in the agent itself (VX, tabun), is the most important factor governing degradation rates in water. The results show that MOFs have great potential in future protective applications. Although the use of simulants provides valuable information for initial screening and selection of new MOFs, the use of live agents revealed additional mechanisms that should aid the future development of even better catalysts.