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Crystals 2016, 6(4), 33; doi:10.3390/cryst6040033

Degradation of Polypropylene Membranes Applied in Membrane Distillation Crystallizer

Institute of Inorganic Technology and Environment Engineering, West Pomeranian University of Technology, Szczecin, ul. Pułaskiego 10, 70-322 Szczecin, Poland
Academic Editor: Gianluca Di Profio
Received: 20 January 2016 / Revised: 9 March 2016 / Accepted: 23 March 2016 / Published: 28 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Membrane-Assisted Crystallization)
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Abstract

The studies on the resistance to degradation of capillary polypropylene membranes assembled in a membrane crystallizer were performed. The supersaturation state of salt was achieved by evaporation of water from the NaCl saturated solutions using membrane distillation process. A high feed temperature (363 K) was used in order to enhance the degradation effects and to shorten the test times. Salt crystallization was carried out by the application of batch or fluidized bed crystallizer. A significant membrane scaling was observed regardless of the method of realized crystallization. The SEM-EDS, DSC, and FTIR methods were used for investigations of polypropylene degradation. The salt crystallization onto the membrane surface accelerated polypropylene degradation. Due to a polymer degradation, the presence of carbonyl groups on the membranes’ surface was identified. Besides the changes in the chemical structure a significant mechanical damage of the membranes, mainly caused by the internal scaling, was also found. As a result, the membranes were severely damaged after 150 h of process operation. A high level of salt rejection was maintained despite damage to the external membrane surface. View Full-Text
Keywords: membrane distillation; scaling; crystallization; polymer degradation membrane distillation; scaling; crystallization; polymer degradation
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Gryta, M. Degradation of Polypropylene Membranes Applied in Membrane Distillation Crystallizer. Crystals 2016, 6, 33.

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