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Intrinsically microporous membranes for molecular separations

 Membrane-technology is an emerging separation technology with excellent energy efficiency. However, most membrane materials developed to this day are focused on having good permeance but are not yet able to separate two molecules with very similar properties although this is a prerequisite for many industrial separations (e.g. separation of API from impurities). Therefore, this project aims specifically at developing membrane materials that will be capable of this. In the first part, metal-organic framework (MOF)-filled thin-film composite (TFC) membranes will be further developed. The main challenge here is the preparation of membranes with a high filler loading (i) and a perfect contact between filler and surrounding polymer (ii). Spray-coating based application of the fillers will be developed to achieve (i) and will be complemented with reactive and expanding fillers to accomplish (ii). The second part will focus on TFC membranes based on stiff and contorted polymers which creates excess free volume by preventing the polymer chains from stacking efficiently. Different monomers will be employed to vary the resulting polymer structure and as such also the separation performance. In addition to material development, a novel-TEM based characterization technique will be developed that will improve the characterization of both filled and unfilled TFC membranes. This technique will be complemented with filtration experiments and regular physicochemical membrane characterization

Date:1 Nov 2019  →  Today
Keywords:Nanofiltration, Metal-Organic Frameworks, Polymers of Intrinsic Microporosity, Membrane characterization
Disciplines:Separation techniques, Chemical characterisation of materials, Catalysis , Sustainable development