Several series of activated carbons prepared by catalytic and noncatalytic gasification and subsequent deposition of pyrocarbon by pyrolysis of methylene chloride or n-amyl alcohol were studied by FTIR, chromatography, and adsorption methods using nitrogen and probe organics (explosives). The relationships between the textural characteristics of carbon samples and the recovery rates (η) of explosives on solid-phase extraction (SPE) using different solvents for their elution after adsorption were analyzed using experimental and quantum chemical calculation results. The η values for nitrate esters, cyclic nitroamines, and nitroaromatics only partially correlate with different adsorbent parameters (characterizing microporosity, mesoporosity, pore size distributions, etc.), polarity of eluting solvents, or characteristics of probe molecules, since there are many factors strongly affecting the recovery rates. Some of the synthesized carbons provide higher η values than those for such commercial adsorbents as Hypercarb and Envicarb. © 2003 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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