Synthesis of anion exchange polystyrene membranes for the electrolysis of sodium chloride



We have prepared a cross-linked polystyrene anion exchange composite membrane for the electrolysis of sodium chloride to produce sodium hydroxide by selective removal of chloride ions. The composite membrane is homogeneously modified by gas phase nitration, followed by amination using hydrazine hydrate, and further reaction with dichloroethane and triethylamine to introduce quaternary ammonium charges on it. We showed that the membrane is specific to the transport of chloride ions through its pores. The performance of the membrane has been evaluated in terms of current efficiency and power consumption, and the effect of various parameters like current density, initial salt concentration, and circulation rate is studied. The maximum current efficiency obtained is 96.5% and the corresponding power consumption is 0.1216 kWh/mol at 5.2 N initial salt concentration and current density of 254 A/m2. © 2008 American Institute of Chemical Engineers AIChE J, 2008