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Type: Journal article
Title: A novel fabrication approach for multifunctional graphene-based thin film nano-composite membranes with enhanced desalination and antibacterial characteristics
Author: Hegab, H.
Elmekawy, A.
Barclay, T.
Michelmore, A.
Zou, L.
Losic, D.
Saint, C.
Ginic-Markovic, M.
Citation: Scientific Reports, 2017; 7(1):1-10
Publisher: Springer Nature
Issue Date: 2017
ISSN: 2045-2322
Statement of
Hanaa M. Hegab, Ahmed ElMekawy, Thomas G. Barclay, Andrew Michelmore, Linda Zou, Dusan Losic, Christopher P. Saint and Milena Ginic-Markovic
Abstract: A practical fabrication technique is presented to tackle the trade-off between the water flux and salt rejection of thin film composite (TFC) reverse osmosis (RO) membranes through controlled creation of a thinner active selective polyamide (PA) layer. The new thin film nano-composite (TFNC) RO membranes were synthesized with multifunctional poly tannic acid-functionalized graphene oxide nanosheets (pTA-f-GO) embedded in its PA thin active layer, which is produced through interfacial polymerization. The incorporation of pTA-f-GOL into the fabricated TFNC membranes resulted in a thinner PA layer with lower roughness and higher hydrophilicity compared to pristine membrane. These properties enhanced both the membrane water flux (improved by 40%) and salt rejection (increased by 8%) of the TFNC membrane. Furthermore, the incorporation of biocidal pTA-f-GO nanosheets into the PA active layer contributed to improving the antibacterial properties by 80%, compared to pristine membrane. The fabrication of the pTA-f-GO nanosheets embedded in the PA layer presented in this study is a very practical, scalable and generic process that can potentially be applied in different types of separation membranes resulting in less energy consumption, increased cost-efficiency and improved performance.
Rights: © The Author(s) 2017. Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit
DOI: 10.1038/s41598-017-07531-y
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