A vapor-phase surface modification method to enhance different types of hollow fiber membranes for industrial scale hydrogen separation

Cher Hon Lau, Bee Ting Low, Lu Shao, Tai-Shung Chung*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Solution-phase modification techniques are conventionally used to post-treat hollow fiber membranes for enhancing the separation performance. The main limitations of these techniques are considerable time consumption and probable deformation of the membrane structure in addition to producing a large amount of solvent waste. Hence, in this study we have devised a batch method and a continuous method for vapor-phase modification. We aim to use these new modification methods to improve the H2/CO2 separation of hollow fibers made from different polyimide materials whilst overcoming the drawbacks of solution phase modification. Using various surface characterization techniques, the conversion of imide to amide groups is confirmed to be predominantly at the outermost layer of the fibers. The chemical modification results in the formation of a radial dense layer at the shell side of the fibers. The H2/CO2 selectivity of the polyimide/ polyethersulfone dual layer hollow fiber increases from 1.7 to 35.5 with an optimal vapor-phase modification duration of 5 min. Both batch and continuous vapor phase modifications produce comparable separation performance. Since the continuous vapor-phase modification method can significantly simplify the post-treatment process and reduce solvent waste, it has great potential for the scale up and industrialization of the effective process of using diamine modification to modify hollow fiber membranes for hydrogen purification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8970-8982
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Volume35
Issue number17
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2010

Keywords

  • Diamine
  • H/CO separation
  • Polyimide
  • Vapor phase modification

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology

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