Synthesis of PES membranes modified with polyurethane–paraffin wax nanocapsules and performance of bovine serum albumin and humic acid rejectionBuse Sert, Gül Kaya, Yasin Ozay, Aya Alterkaoui, Kasım Ocakoglu, Nadir Dizge
- Water Science and Technology
- Environmental Engineering
Membrane fouling is a serious handicap of membrane-based separation, as it reduces permeation flux and hence increases operational and maintenance expenses. Polyurethane–paraffin wax (PU/PW) nanocapsules were integrated into the polyethersulfone membrane to manufacture a composite membrane with higher antifouling and permeability performance against humic acid (HA) and bovine serum albumin (BSA) foulants. All manufactured membranes were characterized by scanning electron microscopy, SEM-EDS, and contact angle. The contact angle of the pristine PES membrane was measured 73.40 ± 1.32. With the embedding of nanocapsules, the contact angle decreased to 64.55 ± 1.23 for PES/PU/PW 2.0 wt%, and the pure water flux of all composite membranes increased when compared to pristine PES. The pristine PES membrane also has shown the lowest steady-state fluxes at 45.84 and 46.59 L/m2h for BSA and HA, respectively. With the increase of PU/PW nanocapsule ratio from 0.5 to 1.0 wt%, steady-state fluxes increased from 51.96 to 71.61 and from 67.87 to 98.73 L/m2h, respectively, for BSA and HA. However, for the PES/PU/PW 2.0 wt% membrane, it was observed that the steady-state flux did not increase but slightly decreased, compared to PES/PU/PW 1.0%. The results depicted that BSA and HA rejection efficiencies of PU/PW nanocapsules blended PES membranes increased when compared to pristine PES membranes.