Separation Mechanisms and Anti-Fouling Properties of a Microporous Polyvinylidene Fluoride–Polyacrylic Acid–Graphene Oxide (PVDF-PAA-GO) Composite Membrane with Salt and Protein Solutions

Li Ting Wang, Yu Han Chen, Wei Ting Chang, Selvaraj Rajesh Kumar, Chien Chang Chen*, Shingjiang Jessie Lue*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

This research demonstrates the preparation of composite membranes containing graphene oxide (GO) and investigates the separation mechanisms of various salts and bovine serum albumin (BSA) solutions. A microporous polyvinylidene fluoride–polyacrylic acid–GO (PVDF-PAA-GO) separation layer was fabricated on non-woven support. The GO-incorporating composite resulted in enlarged pore size (0.16 μm) compared with the control membrane (0.12 μm). The zeta potential of the GO composite was reduced to –31 from –19 mV. The resulting membranes with and without GO were examined for water permeability and rejection efficiency with single salt and BSA solutions. Using the non-woven/PVDF-PAA composite, the permeance values were 88–190 kg/m2hMPa, and the salt rejection coefficients were 9–28% for Na2SO4, MgCl2, MgSO4, and NaCl solutions. These salt removals were based on the Donnan exclusion mechanism considering the ion radii and membrane pore size. Incorporating GO into the separation layer exhibited limited impacts on the filtration of salt solutions, but significantly reduced BSA membrane adhesion and increased permeance. The negatively charged protein reached almost complete removal (98.4%) from the highly negatively charged GO-containing membrane. The GO additive improved the anti-fouling property of the composite membrane and enhanced BSA separation from the salt solution.

Original languageEnglish
Article number40
JournalMembranes
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 28 12 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors.

Keywords

  • anti-fouling
  • microporous membrane
  • polymer–graphene oxide composite
  • protein separation

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