Self-propelling shuttles for radioactive caesium adsorption

Richard I. Foster, Hyung Ju Kim, Sung Jun Kim, Chan Woo Park, Hee Man Yang, Jung Hyun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nuclear accidents such as the events at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in 2011 require a rapid response to minimise contaminant release. Self-propelling shuttles functionalised with Prussian blue are developed for radioactive caesium (Cs) removal from aqueous phases during accident and emergency scenarios. The Marangoni effect provides thrust to the shuttle via ethanol diffusion from an infused hydrogel housed in the shuttle, achieving self-motion for 20-30 minutes with a peak velocity of 1.2 cm s−1. Cs adsorption efficiency by the self-propelling shuttles (83.9%) was comparable after 30 minutes to stirred systems containing a dormant shuttle (85.6%), indicating that the self-propelling property is effective. A maximum loading capacity was estimated at 106 mg g−1 (Langmuir, adj. R2 - 0.99) based on adsorption isotherms, with pseudo-second-order kinetics (R2 = 0.98) best describing the rate-limiting adsorption step as chemisorption. Cs adsorption and subsequent recovery of the shuttles enabled the effective removal of 137Cs from solution (91%).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2830-2835
Number of pages6
JournalEnvironmental Science: Water Research and Technology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Sept 12

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Royal Society of Chemistry.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology


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