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Gas Separation, Applications

Membrane Applications

  1. Adele Brunetti1,
  2. Giuseppe Barbieri1,
  3. Enrico Drioli1,2,3

Published Online: 19 APR 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118522318.emst121

Encyclopedia of Membrane Science and Technology

Encyclopedia of Membrane Science and Technology

How to Cite

Brunetti, A., Barbieri, G. and Drioli, E. 2013. Gas Separation, Applications. Encyclopedia of Membrane Science and Technology. 1–30.

Author Information

  1. 1

    Institute on Membrane Technology of the National Research Council of Italy, Rende, Italy

  2. 2

    Hanyang University, Seoul, South Korea

  3. 3

    University of Calabria, Italy

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 19 APR 2013


Membrane-based gas separation (GS) systems are today widely accepted and, in some cases, used as a unit operation for generation, separation, and purification of gases in gas, chemical, petroleum, and allied industries. There are several fields of application of membrane GS, and several membrane materials and membrane modular solutions are available today for the various fields of interest. However, the growth of large-scale industrial applications is still far from reaching the real potential that membrane GS can offer. Together with the investigation of new materials with improved properties, a key role for widespread use of this technology is represented by the development of new knowledge for better utilization of the unit operations already available on the market in integrated membrane systems combining various membrane operations in the industrial process. The role of membrane engineering is crucial to overcome this hurdle.

This article describes the application fields of membranes in GS. In addition, it addresses the critical needs in the development of this technology and some of the factors that are impeding the growth of GS membranes. After an overview on the membrane materials and membrane modules now available on the market, or being studied in the laboratory, a description of the main GS processes involving membranes is presented, as well as a comparison with traditional technologies currently in use.


  • gas separation;
  • membrane engineering;
  • membrane modules;
  • membrane reactors;
  • precombustion;
  • postcombustion;
  • hydrogen;
  • carbon dioxide