HUST Made Progress in Pervaporation Membranes

May 5, 2016


On April 25th, the research team led by professor Wang Yan from School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, published a paper titled “Poly(vinyl alcohol)/ZIF-8-NH2 Mixed Matrix Membranes for Ethanol Dehydration via Pervaporation” in AICHEJ, which marks a new headway in the research & preparation of novel pervaporation membranes.

Master candidate Zhang Hao is the first author of this paper. In this work, ethanediamine (EDA)-modified zeolitic imidazolate framework (ZIF)-8 particles (ZIF-8-NH2) is synthesized and incorporated in the polyvinylalcohol (PVA) matrix to fabricate novel PVA/ZIF-8-NH2 mixed matrix membranes (MMMs) for pervaporation dehydration of ethanol. The PVA/ZIF-8-NH2 MMMs exhibit enhanced membrane homogeneity and separation performance because of the higher hydrophilicity and restricted agglomeration of the particles, as compared to corresponding MMMs loaded with unmodified particles. The method is simple, controllable and highly operable, and can be expanded to the preparation of most other mixed matrix membranes, solving the common phase separation problem in mixed matrix membranes.

This is the 3rd paper of Wang Yan’s team published in international journals of Chemical Engineering. The previous 2 papers titled “Novel carboxyethyl amine sodium salts as draw solutes with superior forward osmosis performance” and “Synthesis and application of ethylenediamine tetrapropionic salt as a novel draw solute for forward osmosis application” were published in AICHE J on Dec.15th, 2015 and Dec.30th, 2014 respectively.

The first author of the previous two papers is Ph.D candidate Long Qingwu. Through a simple two-step reaction, a series of carboxyethyl amine sodium salts are synthesized and applied as novel draw solutes for forward osmosis (FO). The effects of the CASS concentration on the osmotic pressure and viscosity of the draw solutions, as well as the resulted FO performance are also systematically investigated. By optimizing the pH of draw solution, the composition is varied and therefore its water solubility and osmotic pressure are effectively improved. A high water flux and an acceptable reverse salt flux can be achieved with 0.5 g/mL TTHP-Na draw solution under PRO mode, which is superior to most other draw solutes reported in previous literatures. Triethylenetetramine hexapropionic acid sodium draw solution  for dye wastewater treatment by FO process exhibits a good dewatering capability and low dye leakage, and can be further recycled by nanofiltration, indicating its great potential in FO application.

Since  professor Wang Yan started her independent work in our University in 2013, she has successively published 7 papers in the three top international journals of Chemical Engineering, i.e., AICHEJ,  Chem. Eng.Sci, and Ind.Eng.Chem.Res. It’s known that the team’s research is funded by “Thousand Youth Talent Plan”, National Natural Science Foundation of China and HUST. The team’s research work is currently focoused on the development and improvement of polymeric membranes via molecular design of membrane materials, optimization of membrane microstructure and adjustment of operation conditions, as well as the membrane applications for liquid separtion, waste water treatment and desaination and etc.


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