Isoporous PS-b-PEO ultrafiltration membranes via self-assembly and water-induced phase separation
M. Karunakaran, S.P. Nunes, X. Qiu, H. Yu, K.-V. Peinemann
Journal of Membrane Science, 453, pp. 471-477, (2014)
A simple and efficient approach towards the fabrication of a skinned membrane with highly ordered pores in the nanometer range is presented here. We successfully combined the self-assembly of PS-b-PEO block copolymer and water induced phase separation for the preparation of isoporous PS-b-PEO block copolymer membranes. We produced for the first time asymmetric isoporous PS-b-PEO membranes with a 100 nm thin isoporous separating layer using water at room temperature as coagulant. This was possible by careful selection of the block lengths and the solvent system. FESEM, AFM and TEM measurements were employed to characterize the nanopores of membranes. The pure water fluxes were measured and the flux of membrane was exceptionally high (around 800 L m−2 h−1 bar−1). Protein rejection measurements were carried out for this membrane and the membrane had a retention of about 67% of BSA and 99% of γ-globulin.