The use of nanomaterials for the controlled delivery of pesticides is nascent technology that has the potential to increase the efficiency of food production and decrease pollution. In this work, the prospect of mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSN) for storage and controlled release of metalaxyl fungicide has been investigated. Mesoporous silica nanospheres with average particle diameters of 162 nm and average pore sizes of 3.2 nm were prepared by a sol–gel process. Metalaxyl molecules were loaded into MSN pores from an aqueous solution by a rotary evaporation method. The loaded amount of metalaxyl as evaluated by thermogravimetric analysis was about 14 wt%. Release of the fungicide entrapped in the MSN matrix revealed sustained release behavior. About 76 % of the free metalaxyl was released in soil within a period of 30 days while only 11.5 and 47 % of the metalaxyl contained in the MSN carrier was released in soil and water, respectively, within the same period. The study showed that MSN can be used to successfully store metalaxyl molecules in its mesoporous framework and significantly delay their release in soil.
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- Sustained release of fungicide metalaxyl by mesoporous silica nanospheres
- Springer International Publishing
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