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The BET surface areas of MMT, S2 and M4 are shown in Table 2. As expected, the surface areas of both composites, M4 at 12.93 m2 g−1 and S2 at 16.71 m2 g−1, are much lower than that of MMT alone at 28.58 m2 g−1. This is due to the filling up of the pores of MMT by lignocellulosic materials: PH and/or SD. As filling up occurs, porosity decreases; hence, nitrogen adsorption decreases as well to yield lower surface area (Koc et al. 2014). The binary and ternary composites, M4 and S2 respectively, differed in their surface areas. This is because the binary composite, M4, had a higher loading of lignocellulose (SD) in the MMT than S2. Hence, more of the MMT pores in M4 were filled up by the SD, resulting in it exhibiting a lower surface area.

Table 2

BET surface areas and pore volumes

MaterialSurface area/m2 g−1Pore volume/cm3 g−1
MMT 28.58 0.113 
M4 (binary composite) 12.93 0.0657 
S2 (ternary composite) 16.71 0.0884 
MaterialSurface area/m2 g−1Pore volume/cm3 g−1
MMT 28.58 0.113 
M4 (binary composite) 12.93 0.0657 
S2 (ternary composite) 16.71 0.0884 

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