PDMS/PVDF hybrid electrospun membrane with superhydrophobic property and drop impact dynamics for dyeing wastewater treatment using membrane distillation

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Journal Article
Journal of Membrane Science, 2017, 525 pp. 57 - 67
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© 2016 Elsevier B.V. Fouling in membrane distillation (MD) results in an increase in operation costs and deterioration in a water quality. In this work, a poly(vinylidene fluoride-co-hexafluoropropene) (PVDF-HFP) electrospun (E-PH) membrane was fabricated by hybridizing polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) polymeric microspheres with superhydrophobicity onto the E-PH membrane via electrospinning. The resulting hybrid PDMS with E-PH (E-PDMS) membrane showed a significant enhancement in surface hydrophobicity (contact angle, CA=155.4°) and roughness (Ra=1285 nm). The zeta potential of E-PDMS membrane surface showed a higher negative value than that of a commercial PVDF (C-PVDF) membrane. These properties of E-PDMS membrane provided an antifouling in treating of differently-charged dyes and generated a flake-like dye–dye (loosely bound foulant) structure on the membrane surface rather than in the membrane pores. This also led to a high productivity of E-PDMS membrane (34 L m−2h−1, 50% higher than that of C-PVDF membrane) without fouling or wetting. In addition, complete color removal and pure water production were achieved during a long-term operation. An application of intermittent water flushing (WF) in direct contact MD (DCMD) operation led to a 99% CA recovery of E-PDMS membrane indicating its sustainability. Therefore, the E-PDMS membrane is a promising candidate for MD application in dyeing wastewater treatment.
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