Study on the formation of thin film nanocomposite (TFN) membranes of polymers of intrinsic microporosity and graphene-like fillers: Effect of lateral flake size and chemical functionalization

Monica Alberto, Rupesh Bhavsar, Jose Miguel Luque-Alled, Eric Prestat, Lei Gao, Peter M. Budd, Aravind Vijayaraghavan, Gyorgy Szekely, Stuart M. Holmes, Patricia Gorgojo*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations

Abstract

Thin film nanocomposite (TFN) membranes of polymer of intrinsic microporosity PIM-1 incorporating graphene oxide (GO) nanosheets of different sizes and chemistries are presented. These membranes show an improved separation performance for the recovery of n-butanol from aqueous solutions through pervaporation; an improvement of ca. a third of the value achieved for pristine PIM-1 thin films is obtained for TFN membranes filled with nanometer-sized reduced octyl-functionalized GO. In addition, these nanometer-sized fillers lead to a maximum increase in total flux of approximately 40%. The thickness of the supported films is in the range 1–1.5 µm, and fillers used are micrometer- and nanometer-sized alkyl-functionalized GO nanosheets and their chemically reduced counterparts. As evidenced by a superior overall membrane performance, the interfacial interaction between the filler and the polymer matrix is enhanced for those whose lateral size is in the nanometer range. Moreover, an enhancement in the separation performance and productivity of such membranes is observed for higher operating temperatures and higher contents of n-butanol in the feed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)390-401
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
Volume565
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018

Keywords

  • Alkyl functionalization
  • Graphene oxide
  • Pervaporation
  • Polymer of intrinsic microporosity PIM-1
  • Thin film nanocomposite membranes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation

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