Acta Phys. -Chim. Sin. ›› 2017, Vol. 33 ›› Issue (11): 2173-2183.doi: 10.3866/PKU.WHXB201705312

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Research Progress of Nanoconfined Water

Yi-Ran SUN1,Fei YU2,*(),Jie MA1,3   

  1. 1 Key Laboratory of Yangtze River Water Environment, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, P. R. China
    2 College of Chemistry and Environmental Engineering, Shanghai Institute of Technology, Shanghai 201418, P. R. China
    3 Research and Service Center for Environmental Protection Industry, Yancheng 224000, Jiangsu Province, P. R. China
  • Received:2017-04-10 Published:2017-08-25
  • Contact: Fei YU
  • Supported by:
    The project was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China(21577099);The project was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China(51408362);Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province, China(BK20151300)


Water is an indispensable resource for all biological life on earth. It is crucial for the existence of human beings and civilizations have historically thrived around water bodies. However, there still remains an enormous cognitive gap about the abnormal properties of water, its influence in the field of physics, chemistry, and biology, and the underlying mechanism of its effect on natural processes. Hydroscience has gradually entered the arena for scientific discussion and transformed into a main research area. While the majority of water on earth exists as bulk water, it typically participates in different physical and chemical processes in the form of interface/confined water under both natural and scientific research conditions. Nanoconfined water generally exists in natural and synthetic nanoscale environments, and its distinction from bulk water is mainly reflected in its dynamic and thermodynamic properties. The existence of confined water also has a profound impact on the development of devices composed of nanomaterials and their applications in the fields of biology, environmental science, geology etc. In this paper, the hydrogen bond structure of nanoconfined water has been analyzed and its dynamic, thermodynamic, and electrical properties have been generalized. A summary of the different research methods and their corresponding developmental history, together with examples of the application potential of nanoconfined water in the fields of environmental and material science have been presented. A summary of the progress made and existing problems in the research area of confined water is given along with the prospects for future developments.

Key words: Nanoconfined water, Hydrogen bond, Dynamics, Phase transition, Molecular dynamics simulation