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Title: Mesoporous Silica Gel–Based Mixed Matrix Membranes for Improving Mass Transfer in Forward Osmosis: Effect of Pore Size of Filler
Authors: Lee, Jian-Yuan
Wang, Yining
Tang, Chuyang Y.
Huo, Fengwei
Issue Date: 2015
Source: Lee, J.-Y., Wang, Y., Tang, C. Y., & Huo, F. (2015). Mesoporous Silica Gel–Based Mixed Matrix Membranes for Improving Mass Transfer in Forward Osmosis: Effect of Pore Size of Filler. Scientific Reports, 5, 16808-.
Series/Report no.: Scientific Reports
Abstract: The efficiency of forward osmosis (FO) process is generally limited by the internal concentration polarization (ICP) of solutes inside its porous substrate. In this study, mesoporous silica gel (SG) with nominal pore size ranging from 4–30 nm was used as fillers to prepare SG-based mixed matrix substrates. The resulting mixed matrix membranes had significantly reduced structural parameter and enhanced membrane water permeability as a result of the improved surface porosity of the substrates. An optimal filler pore size of ~9 nm was observed. This is in direct contrast to the case of thin film nanocomposite membranes, where microporous nanoparticle fillers are loaded to the membrane rejection layer and are designed in such a way that these fillers are able to retain solutes while allowing water to permeate through them. In the current study, the mesoporous fillers are designed as channels to both water and solute molecules. FO performance was enhanced at increasing filler pore size up to 9 nm due to the lower hydraulic resistance of the fillers. Nevertheless, further increasing filler pore size to 30 nm was accompanied with reduced FO efficiency, which can be attributed to the intrusion of polymer dope into the filler pores.
ISSN: 2045-2322
DOI: 10.1038/srep16808
Rights: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
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