Abstract

Even in the 21st century, the oil industry is yet to overcome some major problems it faces related to oil spill cleanup. Oil spills can cause a multitude of problems for the environment which may even last for decades after the spill occurs. This paper discusses a novel approach that may provide a complete solution to combat oil spills. Conventional techniques are not adequate to solve the problems of massive oil spills. Graphene based aerogels or Aerographene have attracted widespread attention due to its excellent oleophilicity, hydrophobicity, reusability, high uptake rate of oil, high uptake capacity and recovery of oil. Although the application of graphene aerogel for an oil spill is still in its nascent stage, it offers great promise for the future. It is believed to have potential to replace present sorbents which are used commercially. This paper briefly outlines present oil spill cleanup techniques and problems associated with each technique. A major part of this paper will be on the evaluation of aerographene properties and how it overcomes major problems related to conventional techniques. Many properties of aerographene have been studied which makes aerographene stand a chance of replacing the present oil spill cleanup methods. This paper presents a novel idea by which cleaning up oil spills with the help of aerographene will become much simpler, easier, cheaper and will prevent the environment from degrading at a massive scale due to oil spills.

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