The influence of membrane formation parameters on structural morphology and performance of PES/PDMS composite membrane for gas separation



In this study, influence of membrane preparation parameters on structural morphology and performance of polyethersulfone/polydimethylsiloxane (PES/PDMS) composite membrane was investigated for gas separation. Asymmetric PES flat sheet membranes were composed by phase inversion method and used as supports. PES composite membranes were fabricated by coating silicone rubber as selective layer on the top surface of support. Effects of different concentrations of PES and PDMS, solvent type, and support thickness on membrane performance were investigated for separation of oxygen from nitrogen. The optimized superior membrane was further modified using polyvinylidenfluoride, methanol and ethanol as additives in PES solutions and/or in water coagulation bath to promote the membrane capability. The results showed that addition of ethanol and methanol in cast solution and coagulation bath can greatly affect the morphology and hence the performance of the prepared membranes. The permeance changes have the contrary trend with solubility parameter difference between solvent and nonsolvent mixture, for instance when this parameter difference was lowest, higher permeance was obtained. Support and coating polymer concentration can control the permeance. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2011