Unravelling the solvent flux behaviour of ceramic nanofiltration and ultrafiltration membranes
In order to increase the understanding of the underlying processes in organic solvent nanofiltration (OSN), a study has been undertaken aimed at clarifying the solvent flux behaviour of ceramic nanofiltration and ultrafiltration membranes. Ceramic membranes were chosen for their non-swelling character. Pure water and a variation of 11 different organic solvents were measured on a series of different ceramic membranes with pore-size diameters ranging from 0.9 nm up to 100 nm. To avoid any historical effects, each flux measurement was carried out on a new membrane. The flux results were analysed in a phenomenological way, and a common very simple linear relationship was observed between the product of flux and viscosity of the solvent, and the total Hansen solubility parameter of the solvent. The linear relationship was found for all membranes, independent of the membrane pore size and the membrane material. The slope of the linear relationship was found to depend exponentially on the pore-size diameter and on the polarity of the membrane surface. This result emphasizes the importance of viscosity in the solvent transport, but also of the polarity difference between membrane surface and solvent. The very simple flux model deduced, allows a straightforward prediction of the flux of any solvent or solvent mixture, once the water flux of the membrane is known. At the high pore-size end, the phenomenological model naturally transforms into the viscous-flow or pore-flow behaviour as required. A tentative physical explanation of the model takes into account the presence and extension of a water layer adsorbed to the total pore surface of these membranes. This work also shows that the water flux of a hydrophilic membrane gives a good indication of its molecular weight cut-off (MWCO), and therefore of its separation performance in water. (C)0 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Source (journal)
Journal of membrane science. - Amsterdam
Amsterdam : 2013
439(2013), p. 36-47
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (publisher's version - intranet only)
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Publication type
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Creation 04.09.2013
Last edited 17.01.2018
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