Engineering Surface Energy and Nanostructure of Microporous Films for Expanded Membrane Distillation Applicat
- Engineering Surface Energy and Nanostructure of Microporous Films for Expanded Membrane Distillation Applicat
- 부찬희; Jongho Lee; Menachem Elimelech
- Issue Date
- Environmental science & technology
- VOL 50-8119
- We investigated the factors that determine surface omniphobicity of microporous membranes and evaluated the potential application of these membranes in desalination of low surface tension wastewaters by membrane distillation (MD). Specifically, the effects of surface morphology and surface energy on membrane surface omniphobicity were systematically investigated by evaluating wetting resistance to low surface tension liquids. Single and multilevel re-entrant structures were achieved by using cylindrical glass fibers as a membrane substrate and grafting silica nanoparticles (SiNPs) on the fibers. Surface energy of the membrane was tuned by functionalizing the fiber substrate with fluoroalkylsilane (FAS) having two different lengths of fluoroalkyl chains. Results show that surface omniphobicity of the modified fibrous membrane increased with higher level of re-entrant structure and with lower surface energy. The secondary re-entrant structure achieved by SiNP coating on the cylindrical fibers was found to play a critical role in enhancing the surface omniphobicity. Membranes coated with SiNPs and chemically modified by the FAS with a longer fluoroalkyl chain (or lower surface energy) exhibited excellent surface omniphobicity and showed wetting resistance to low surface tension liquids such as ethanol (22.1 mN m？1). We further evaluated performance of the membranes in desalination of saline feed solutions with varying surface tensions by membrane distillation (MD). The engineered membranes exhibited stable MD performance with low surface tension feed waters, demonstrating the potential application omniphobic membranes in desalinating complex, high salinity industrial wastewaters.
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