The synthesis and characterization of colloidal mesoporous silica (CMS) functionalized with vinyl-, benzyl-, phenyl-, cyano-, mercapto-, aminopropyl- or dihydroimidazole moieties is reported. Uniform mesoporous particles ranging in size from 40 to 150 nm are generated in a co-condensation process of tetraethylorthosilicate (TEOS) and organotriethoxysilanes (RTES) in alkaline aqueous media containing triethanolamine (TEA) in combination with cetyltrimethylammonium chloride (CTACl) serving as a structure-directing agent. The materials are obtained as colloidal suspensions featuring long-term stability after template removal by ion exchange with an ethanolic solution of ammonium nitrate or HCl. The spherical particles exhibit a wormlike pore system with defined pore sizes and high surface areas. Samples are analyzed by a number of techniques including TEM, SEM, DLS, TGA, Raman, and cross-polarized 29Si-MAS NMR spectroscopy, as well as nitrogen sorption measurements. We demonstrate that co-condensation and grafting methods result in similar changes in the nitrogen adsorption behavior, indicating a successful internal lining of the pores with functional groups through both procedures.
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