Abstract

The fabrication of self-doped sulfonated polyaniline S-PANI membranes is reported here for the first time and addresses key challenges of PANI membranes including fouling, solvent stability issues and acid leaching. Sulfonation of the PANI-powder was confirmed by FTIR, UV-VIS and SEM-EDX characterisation. The membranes were prepared via phase inversion approach in water from a solution of 23% w/v S-PANI and were chemically cross-linked with three different organic cross-linkers: α,α′-Dichloro-p-xylene (DCX), glutaraldehyde (GA) and terephtaloyl chloride (TCL). PANI, S-PANI, S-PANI DCX, S-PANI TCL and S-PANI-GA were evaluated for their hydrophilicity, morphology, chemical properties and filtration performance showing that the chemically cross-linked S-PANI membranes have superior stability and reusability in DMF when tested in dead-end cell at 5 bar. Filtration experiments in water showed that S-PANI-GA has an increase in PEG rejection of 2.3 times and a MWCO of 1800 Da in contrast with PANI and SPANI, which showed a MWCO above 5000 Da. Fouling performance using BSA, showed a significant improvement of flux recovery for S-PANI and S-PANI GA, with the membranes regaining 87% and 83% of their original flux after one cleaning-fouling cycle. Conversely, PANI had a flux recovery of only 40%. The low irreversible fouling of the membranes, 13% for S-PANI and 17% for S-PANI GA, against 65% for PANI after 3 cycles is an encouraging result for the reduction of costly and high environmentally impact chemical cleaning in membrane processes. Overall, this study provides a simple method to produce low fouling and long-term solvent resistant membranes to enhance the widespread use of membrane technology in industrial processes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number117712
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
Early online date2 Dec 2019
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2 Dec 2019

Keywords

  • Chemical cross-linking
  • Low fouling
  • Self-doped polyaniline
  • Solvent resistance
  • Tight UF membranes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation

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