Probing flow activity in polyamide layer of reverse osmosis membrane with nanoparticle tracers

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Title: Probing flow activity in polyamide layer of reverse osmosis membrane with nanoparticle tracers
Author(s): Li, Y
Klosowski, MM
McGilvery, CM
Porter, AE
Livingston, AG
Cabral, JT
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: We investigate the flow activity of the nanostructured polyamide layer in reverse osmosis (RO) membrane, using gold nanoparticle (NP) tracers of 1–40 nm diameter. Following a detailed structural examination of a commercial SW30RH membrane selected for this study, NP solutions were infiltrated from either the polyamide front or the polysulfone support side. The permeate was then analyzed spectroscopically while the entrapment of NPs within the membrane was mapped by high resolution electron microscopy. Results show that back-filtered NPs exhibited a fractionated distribution according to size: 1 nm nanoparticles permeate across the polyamide-polysulfone interface reaching the interior of the polyamide corrugations, while the larger ones (>10 nm) are retained within the polysulfone and gradually arrested at approximately 100 nm below the polyamide-polysulfone interface. Intermediate-sized 5 nm nanoparticles reached the undulating folds just below the polyamide layer. Permeation pathways across polyamide layer appear to exclude all tracers above 1 nm, which become selectively distributed across the polyamide layer: positively charged NPs label the outer surface of the polyamide film (expected to be carboxylate-rich), while negatively charged particles are uniformly distributed within the layer. Diafiltration measurements quantify the transient kinetics of NP retention and permeation. Overall, our results establish the flow activity of the polyamide nodular surface and provide estimates for the dimensions of permeation pathways.
Publication Date: 7-Apr-2017
Date of Acceptance: 3-Apr-2017
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/51713
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.memsci.2017.04.005
ISSN: 0376-7388
Publisher: ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV
Start Page: 9
End Page: 17
Journal / Book Title: JOURNAL OF MEMBRANE SCIENCE
Volume: 534
Copyright Statement: © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. This manuscript is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/
Sponsor/Funder: BP International Limited
Funder's Grant Number: Order No. 75195/ICAM10 (IC)
Keywords: Science & Technology
Technology
Physical Sciences
Engineering, Chemical
Polymer Science
Engineering
Thin film composite
Reverse osmosis
Nanoparticles
Characterization
COMPOSITE NANOFILTRATION MEMBRANES
INTERFACIAL POLYMERIZATION
FILM
RO
PERMEABILITY
MICROSCOPY
PARTICLES
03 Chemical Sciences
09 Engineering
Chemical Engineering
Publication Status: Published
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Engineering
Materials
Chemical Engineering
Faculty of Natural Sciences



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