Carbon nanotube based composite membranes for water desalination by membrane distillation

Dumee, Ludovic, Sears, Kallista, Finn, Niall, Duke, Mikel ORCID: 0000-0002-3383-0006 and Gray, Stephen ORCID: 0000-0002-8748-2748 (2010) Carbon nanotube based composite membranes for water desalination by membrane distillation. Desalination and Water Treatment, 17. pp. 72-79. ISSN 1944-3994


New technologies are required to improve desalination efficiency and increase water treatment capacities. One promising low energy technique to produce potable water from either sea or sewage water is membrane distillation (MD). However, to be competitive with other desalination processes, membranes need to be designed specifically for the MD process requirements. Here we report on the design of carbon nanotube (CNT) based composite material membranes for direct contact membrane distillation (DCMD). The membranes were characterized and tested in a DCMD setup under different feed temperatures and test conditions. The composite CNT structures showed significantly improved performance compared to their pure self-supporting CNT counterparts. The best composite CNT membranes gave permeabilities as high as 3.3×(10 to the 12th power)kg/m s Pa) with an average salt rejection of 95% and lifespan of up to 39 h of continuous testing, making them highly promising candidates for DCMD.

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Item type Article
DOI 10.5004/dwt.2010.1701
Official URL
Subjects Historical > Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Institute for Sustainability and Innovation (ISI)
Historical > FOR Classification > 0904 Chemical Engineering
Historical > SEO Classification > 9004 Water and Waste Services
Keywords ResPubID20146, desalination, nanotube, bucky-paper, composite material, membrane distillation
Citations in Scopus 63 - View on Scopus
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