Thin Film Composite Membranes on Ceramic Substrate for Dehydration of Organics via Pervaporation

Isopropanol (IPA) is an important solvent and cleaning agent with wide applications in semiconductor microelectronic and pharmaceutical industries. IPA is primarily produced by combining water and propene in a hydration reaction. The IPA produced is usually in a mixture with water and distillation is used to obtain IPA with 87.9% purity. Higher purity IPA can only be achieved through azeotropic distillation with cyclohexane or diisopropyl ether. In both cases large amount of energy is used for the purification process. To lower purification cost pervaporation a membrane-based technology is a promising method because of its easy operation low energy consumption and small footprint. Pervaporation is a membrane process whereby the permeate side is under vacuum and water is vapourised as it passes through the membrane from the feed side to the permeate side. Pervaporation is able to provide high separation efficiency for azeotropic mixtures of alcohols and water to obtain the purity required for the alcohols. This technology relates to a method of synthesizing a thin film composite membrane supported by ceramic substrates. The resulting membrane exhibits an impressive water flux of 6 kg/m2.h at 80oC with an excellent selectivity of 1625. Applications: 1) Biofuel dehydration (eg biobutanol) 2) Purification of organic solvents (isopropanol) 3) Nanofiltration in extremely harsh conditions


1) Commercially available microfiltration ceramic membranes can be used 2) Can be used in harsh conditions such as high temperature high pressure or extreme pH conditions 3) Extremely high water flux compared to other ceramic/polymeric membranes for pervaporation; suitable for high volume processes

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