The MOCA project

Metal Organic frameworks and organic CAges for highly selective gas separation membranes and heavy metal capture devices

Sponsored by the CARIPLO Foundation

Circular Economy 2019

grant n. 2019-2090

Our goals:

1) capture of pollutants (e.g. heavy metals, anions, dyes) from liquid wastes,

2) capture of e.g. CO2 from gaseous streams,

3) the upgrading of methane from natural gas or biogas.

About us:

Three synergistic teams will operate: the University of Pavia & the University of Calabria will develop highly selective porous organic Cages & MOFs, respectively, while ITM-CNR will focus on MMMs.

Decontamination and upgrade

A direct problem of the disposal of waste in landfills is the leachate. This effluent can be decontaminated from INORGANIC AND ORGANIC POLLUTANTS by employing highly selective sorbents.

An alternative to landfills is differentiation, after which the collected organic fraction can be converted into biogas, which must then be UPGRADED TO BIOMETHANE AND PURE CO2. The rest can be incinerated to produce combined heat/power, which then needs CAPTURE OF CO2 and other GASEOUS POLLUTANTS from the flue gas.

The MOCA project will make these separations possible by using selective extractants (Cages and MOFs) embedded in Mixed-Matrix Membranes. A further goal of MOCA is the valorisation of the recovered materials (e.g. decontaminated water, captured CO2, purified CH4) as valuable starting products for new processes, according to the principles of Circular Economy.

How to find us:

Valeria Amendola Department of Chemistry University of Pavia via Taramelli 12 I27100 Pavia (Italy) email:

Donatella Armentano Department of Chemistry & Chemical Technologies (CTC)
University of Calabria
I87036 Arcavacata di Rende, Cosenza (Italy) email:

J.C. Jansen, PhD Institute on Membrane Technology, CNR-ITM Via P. Bucci, Cubo 17/C I87036 Rende, CS (Italy) email: