Mechanistic Insights into the Role of Polydopamine Interlayer toward Improved Separation Performance of Polyamide Nanofiltration Membranes

Zhe Yang, Fei Wang, Hao Guo, Lu Elfa Peng, Xiao Hua Ma, Xiao Xiao Song, Zhiwei Wang, Chuyang Y. Tang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

139 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Interlayered thin-film nanocomposite membranes (TFNi) are an emerging type of membranes with great potential to overcome the permeability-selectivity upper bound of conventional thin-film composite (TFC) nanofiltration and reverse osmosis membranes. However, the exact roles of the interlayer and the corresponding mechanisms leading to enhanced separation performance of TFNi membranes remain poorly understood. This study reports a polydopamine (PDA)-intercalated TFNi nanofiltration membrane (PA-PSF2, PDA coating time of 2 h) that possessed nearly an order of magnitude higher water permeance (14.8 ± 0.4 Lm-2 h-1 bar-1) than the control TFC membrane (PA-PFS0, 2.4 ± 0.5 Lm-2 h-1 bar-1). The TFNi membrane further showed enhanced rejection toward a wide range of inorganic salts and small organic molecules (including antibiotics and endocrine disruptors). Detailed mechanistic investigation reveals that the membrane separation performance was enhanced due to both the direct "gutter"effect of the PDA interlayer and its indirect effects resulting from enhanced polyamide formation on the PDA-coated substrate, with the "gutter"effect playing a more dominant role. This study provides a mechanistic and comprehensive framework for the future development of TFNi membranes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11611-11621
Number of pages11
JournalEnvironmental Science and Technology
Volume54
Issue number18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • Environmental Chemistry

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