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Water transport through ultrathin polyamide nanofilms used for reverse osmosis

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Title: Water transport through ultrathin polyamide nanofilms used for reverse osmosis
Authors: Jiang, Z
Karan, S
Livingston, A
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Thin‐film composite membranes comprising a polyamide nanofilm separating layer on a support material are state of the art for desalination by reverse osmosis. Nanofilm thickness is thought to determine the rate of water transport through the membranes; although due to the fast and relatively uncontrolled interfacial polymerization reaction employed to form these nanofilms, they are typically crumpled and the separating layer is reported to be ≈50–200 nm thick. This crumpled structure has confounded exploration of the independent effects of thickness, permeation mechanism, and the support material. Herein, smooth sub‐8 nm polyamide nanofilms are fabricated at a free aqueous–organic interface, exhibiting chemical homogeneity at both aqueous and organic facing surfaces. Transfer of these ultrathin nanofilms onto porous supports provides fast water transport through the resulting nanofilm composite membranes. Manipulating the intrinsic nanofilm thickness from ≈15 down to 8 nm reveals that water permeance increases proportionally with the thickness decrease, after which it increases nonlinearly to 2.7 L m−2 h−1 bar−1 as the thickness is further reduced to ≈6 nm.
Issue Date: 12-Apr-2018
Date of Acceptance: 12-Jan-2018
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/56281
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1002/adma.201705973
ISSN: 0935-9648
Publisher: Wiley
Journal / Book Title: Advanced Materials
Volume: 30
Issue: 15
Copyright Statement: © 2018 WILEY‐VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim. This is the pre-peer reviewed version of the following article, which has been published in final form at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/adma.201705973
Sponsor/Funder: Engineering & Physical Science Research Council (EPSRC)
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
BP , Inc.
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Funder's Grant Number: EP/J014974/1
EP/J014974/1
BP
EPRSC
Keywords: Science & Technology
Physical Sciences
Technology
Chemistry, Multidisciplinary
Chemistry, Physical
Nanoscience & Nanotechnology
Materials Science, Multidisciplinary
Physics, Applied
Physics, Condensed Matter
Chemistry
Science & Technology - Other Topics
Materials Science
Physics
composite membranes
desalination
interfacial polymerization
reverse osmosis
ultrathin nanofilms
FILM COMPOSITE MEMBRANES
INTERFACIAL POLYMERIZATION
MOLECULAR SEPARATION
SUPPORT MEMBRANE
THIN-FILMS
PERMEATION
NANOFILTRATION
MICROPOROSITY
DESALINATION
LAYER
02 Physical Sciences
03 Chemical Sciences
09 Engineering
Publication Status: Published
Article Number: 1705973
Online Publication Date: 2018-02-27
Appears in Collections:Chemical Engineering
Faculty of Natural Sciences
Faculty of Engineering