Open AccessArticle
Characterizing the Performance of Gas-Permeable Membranes as an Ammonia Recovery Strategy from Anaerobically Digested Dairy Manure
Membranes 2017, 7(4), 59; doi:10.3390/membranes7040059 -
Abstract
Capturing ammonia from anaerobically digested manure could simultaneously decrease the adverse effects of ammonia inhibition on biogas production, reduce reactive nitrogen (N) loss to the environment, and produce mineral N fertilizer as a by-product. In this study, gas permeable membranes (GPM) were used
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Capturing ammonia from anaerobically digested manure could simultaneously decrease the adverse effects of ammonia inhibition on biogas production, reduce reactive nitrogen (N) loss to the environment, and produce mineral N fertilizer as a by-product. In this study, gas permeable membranes (GPM) were used to capture ammonia from dairy manure and digestate by the diffusion of gaseous ammonia across the membrane where ammonia is captured by diluted acid, forming an aqueous ammonium salt. A lab-scale prototype using tubular expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) GPM was used to (1) characterize the effect of total ammonium nitrogen (TAN) concentration, temperature, and pH on the ammonia capture rate using GPM, and (2) to evaluate the performance of a GPM system in conditions similar to a mesophilic anaerobic digester. The GPM captured ammonia at a rate between 2.2 to 6.3% of gaseous ammonia in the donor solution per day. Capture rate was faster in anaerobic digestate than raw manure. The ammonia capture rate could be predicted using non-linear regression based on the factors of total ammonium nitrogen concentration, temperature, and pH. This use of membranes shows promise in reducing the deleterious impacts of ammonia on both the efficiency of biogas production and the release of reactive N to the environment. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Comparison of the Simplification of the Pressure Profiles Solving the Binary Friction Model for Asymmetric Membranes
Membranes 2017, 7(4), 58; doi:10.3390/membranes7040058 -
Abstract
The gas flow through porous media including that of multiple species is frequently described by the binary friction model (BFM) considering the binary diffusion, Knudsen diffusion, and viscous flow. Therefore, a numerical simulation was performed on a microporous support of an asymmetric oxygen
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The gas flow through porous media including that of multiple species is frequently described by the binary friction model (BFM) considering the binary diffusion, Knudsen diffusion, and viscous flow. Therefore, a numerical simulation was performed on a microporous support of an asymmetric oxygen transport membrane. As its exact numerical solution is complicated and not always possible, the results of two different levels of simplification of the pressure profiles within the porous support are compared to the exact numerical solution. The simplification using a constant pressure equal to the gas pressure outside the support leads to a deviation by up to 0.45 mL·min−1·cm−2 from the exact solution under certain operating condition. A different simplification using a constant pressure averaged between the outside of the support and the support/membrane interface reduces this deviation to zero. Therefore, this is a useful measure to reduce computational efforts when implementing the Binary Friction Model in computational fluid dynamics simulations. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
PES-Kaolin Mixed Matrix Membranes for Arsenic Removal from Water
Membranes 2017, 7(4), 57; doi:10.3390/membranes7040057 -
Abstract
The aim of this work was the fabrication and the characterization of mixed matrix membranes (MMMs) for arsenic (As) removal from water. Membrane separation was combined with an adsorption process by incorporating the kaolin (KT2) Algerian natural clay in polymeric membranes. The effects
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The aim of this work was the fabrication and the characterization of mixed matrix membranes (MMMs) for arsenic (As) removal from water. Membrane separation was combined with an adsorption process by incorporating the kaolin (KT2) Algerian natural clay in polymeric membranes. The effects of casting solution composition was explored using different amounts of polyethersufone (PES) as a polymer, polyvinyl-pyrrolidone (PVP K17) and polyethylene glycol (PEG 200) as pore former agents, N-methyl pyrrolidone (NMP) as a solvent, and kaolin. Membranes were prepared by coupling Non-solvent Induced Phase Separation and Vapour Induced Phase Separation (NIPS and VIPS, respectively). The influence of the exposure time to controlled humid air and temperature was also investigated. The MMMs obtained were characterized in terms of morphology, pore size, porosity, thickness, contact angle and pure water permeability. Adsorption membrane-based tests were carried out in order to assess the applicability of the membranes produced for As removal from contaminated water. Among the investigated kaolin concentrations (ranging from 0 wt % to 5 wt %), a content of 1.25 wt % led to the MMM with the most promising performance. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Membrane Distillation of Meat Industry Effluent with Hydrophilic Polyurethane Coated Polytetrafluoroethylene Membranes
Membranes 2017, 7(4), 55; doi:10.3390/membranes7040055 -
Abstract
Meat rendering operations produce stick water waste which is rich in proteins, fats, and minerals. Membrane distillation (MD) may further recover water and valuable solids, but hydrophobic membranes are contaminated by the fats. Here, commercial hydrophobic polytetrafluorethylene (PTFE) membranes with a hydrophilic polyurethane
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Meat rendering operations produce stick water waste which is rich in proteins, fats, and minerals. Membrane distillation (MD) may further recover water and valuable solids, but hydrophobic membranes are contaminated by the fats. Here, commercial hydrophobic polytetrafluorethylene (PTFE) membranes with a hydrophilic polyurethane surface layer (PU-PTFE) are used for the first time for direct contact MD (DCMD) on real poultry, fish, and bovine stick waters. Metal membrane microfiltration (MMF) was also used to capture fats prior to MD. Although the standard hydrophobic PTFE membranes failed rapidly, PU-PTFE membranes effectively processed all stick water samples to colourless permeate with sodium rejections >99%. Initial clean solution fluxes 5–6 L/m2/h declined to less than half during short 40% water recovery tests for all stick water samples. Fish stick water uniquely showed reduced fouling and up to 78% water recovery. Lost flux was easily restored by rinsing the membrane with clean water. MMF prior to MD removed 92% of fats, facilitating superior MD performance. Differences in fouling between stick waters were attributed to temperature polarisation from higher melt temperature fats and relative proportions to proteins. Hydrophilic coated MD membranes are applicable to stick water processing but further studies should consider membrane cleaning and longer-term stability. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
A Comprehensive Review of Our Current Understanding of Red Blood Cell (RBC) Glycoproteins
Membranes 2017, 7(4), 56; doi:10.3390/membranes7040056 -
Abstract
Human red blood cells (RBC), which are the cells most commonly used in the study of biological membranes, have some glycoproteins in their cell membrane. These membrane proteins are band 3 and glycophorins A–D, and some substoichiometric glycoproteins (e.g., CD44, CD47, Lu, Kell,
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Human red blood cells (RBC), which are the cells most commonly used in the study of biological membranes, have some glycoproteins in their cell membrane. These membrane proteins are band 3 and glycophorins A–D, and some substoichiometric glycoproteins (e.g., CD44, CD47, Lu, Kell, Duffy). The oligosaccharide that band 3 contains has one N-linked oligosaccharide, and glycophorins possess mostly O-linked oligosaccharides. The end of the O-linked oligosaccharide is linked to sialic acid. In humans, this sialic acid is N-acetylneuraminic acid (NeuAc). Another sialic acid, N-glycolylneuraminic acid (NeuGc) is present in red blood cells of non-human origin. While the biological function of band 3 is well known as an anion exchanger, it has been suggested that the oligosaccharide of band 3 does not affect the anion transport function. Although band 3 has been studied in detail, the physiological functions of glycophorins remain unclear. This review mainly describes the sialo-oligosaccharide structures of band 3 and glycophorins, followed by a discussion of the physiological functions that have been reported in the literature to date. Moreover, other glycoproteins in red blood cell membranes of non-human origin are described, and the physiological function of glycophorin in carp red blood cell membranes is discussed with respect to its bacteriostatic activity. Full article
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Open AccessReview
The Role of Ion Exchange Membranes in Membrane Capacitive Deionisation
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 54; doi:10.3390/membranes7030054 -
Abstract
Ion-exchange membranes (IEMs) are unique in combining the electrochemical properties of ion exchange resins and the permeability of a membrane. They are being used widely to treat industrial effluents, and in seawater and brackish water desalination. Membrane Capacitive Deionisation (MCDI) is an emerging,
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Ion-exchange membranes (IEMs) are unique in combining the electrochemical properties of ion exchange resins and the permeability of a membrane. They are being used widely to treat industrial effluents, and in seawater and brackish water desalination. Membrane Capacitive Deionisation (MCDI) is an emerging, energy efficient technology for brackish water desalination in which these ion-exchange membranes act as selective gates allowing the transport of counter-ions toward carbon electrodes. This article provides a summary of recent developments in the preparation, characterization, and performance of ion exchange membranes in the MCDI field. In some parts of this review, the most relevant literature in the area of electrodialysis (ED) is also discussed to better elucidate the role of the ion exchange membranes. We conclude that more work is required to better define the desalination performance of the proposed novel materials and cell designs for MCDI in treating a wide range of feed waters. The extent of fouling, the development of cleaning strategies, and further techno-economic studies, will add value to this emerging technique. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Recent Developments of Graphene Oxide-Based Membranes: A Review
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 52; doi:10.3390/membranes7030052 -
Abstract
Membrane-based separation technology has attracted great interest in many separation fields due to its advantages of easy-operation, energy-efficiency, easy scale-up, and environmental friendliness. The development of novel membrane materials and membrane structures is an urgent demand to promote membrane-based separation technology. Graphene oxide
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Membrane-based separation technology has attracted great interest in many separation fields due to its advantages of easy-operation, energy-efficiency, easy scale-up, and environmental friendliness. The development of novel membrane materials and membrane structures is an urgent demand to promote membrane-based separation technology. Graphene oxide (GO), as an emerging star nano-building material, has showed great potential in the membrane-based separation field. In this review paper, the latest research progress in GO-based membranes focused on adjusting membrane structure and enhancing their mechanical strength as well as structural stability in aqueous environment is highlighted and discussed in detail. First, we briefly reviewed the preparation and characterization of GO. Then, the preparation method, characterization, and type of GO-based membrane are summarized. Finally, the advancements of GO-based membrane in adjusting membrane structure and enhancing their mechanical strength, as well as structural stability in aqueous environment, are particularly discussed. This review hopefully provides a new avenue for the innovative developments of GO-based membrane in various membrane applications. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Polymeric Nanocomposite Membranes for Next Generation Pervaporation Process: Strategies, Challenges and Future Prospects
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 53; doi:10.3390/membranes7030053 -
Abstract
Pervaporation (PV) has been considered as one of the most active and promising areas in membrane technologies in separating close boiling or azeotropic liquid mixtures, heat sensitive biomaterials, water or organics from its mixtures that are indispensable constituents for various important chemical and
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Pervaporation (PV) has been considered as one of the most active and promising areas in membrane technologies in separating close boiling or azeotropic liquid mixtures, heat sensitive biomaterials, water or organics from its mixtures that are indispensable constituents for various important chemical and bio-separations. In the PV process, the membrane plays the most pivotal role and is of paramount importance in governing the overall efficiency. This article evaluates and collaborates the current research towards the development of next generation nanomaterials (NMs) and embedded polymeric membranes with regard to its synthesis, fabrication and application strategies, challenges and future prospects. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Perfluorinated Compounds as Test Media for Porous Membranes
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 51; doi:10.3390/membranes7030051 -
Abstract
We suggest a failure-free method of porous membranes characterization that gives the researcher the opportunity to compare and characterize properties of any porous membrane. This proposal is supported by an investigation of eight membranes made of different organic and inorganic materials, with nine
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We suggest a failure-free method of porous membranes characterization that gives the researcher the opportunity to compare and characterize properties of any porous membrane. This proposal is supported by an investigation of eight membranes made of different organic and inorganic materials, with nine different perfluorinated compounds. It was found that aromatic compounds, perfluorobenzene, and perfluorotoluene, used in the current study show properties different from other perfluorinated aliphatics. They demonstrate extreme deviation from the general sequence indicating the existence of π-π-interaction on the pore wall. The divergence of the flow for cyclic compounds from ideal e.g., linear compounds can be an indication of the pore dimension. Full article
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Open AccessCommunication
The Effect of Concentration Factor on Membrane Fouling
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 50; doi:10.3390/membranes7030050 -
Abstract
Bench-scale systems are often used to evaluate pretreatment methods and operational conditions that can be applied in full-scale ultrafiltration (UF) systems. However, the membrane packing density is substantially different in bench and full-scale systems. Differences in concentration factor (CF) at the solution–membrane interface
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Bench-scale systems are often used to evaluate pretreatment methods and operational conditions that can be applied in full-scale ultrafiltration (UF) systems. However, the membrane packing density is substantially different in bench and full-scale systems. Differences in concentration factor (CF) at the solution–membrane interface as a result of packing density may impact the mass transfer and fouling rate and the applicability of bench-scale systems. The present study compared membrane resistance when considering raw water (CF = 1) and reject water (also commonly referred to as concentrate water) (CF > 1) as feed in UF systems operated in deposition (dead-end) mode. A positive relationship was observed between the concentration of the organic matter in the solution being filtered and resistance. Bench-scale trials conducted with CF = 1 water were more representative of full-scale operation than trials conducted with elevated CFs when considering membrane resistance and permeate quality. As such, the results of this study indicate that the use of the same feed water as used at full-scale (CF = 1) is appropriate to evaluate fouling in UF systems operated in deposition mode. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Membrane-Accelerated Amyloid-β Aggregation and Formation of Cross-β Sheets
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 49; doi:10.3390/membranes7030049 -
Abstract
Amyloid-β aggregates play a causative role in Alzheimer’s disease. These aggregates are a product of the physical environment provided by the basic neuronal membrane, composed of a lipid bilayer. The intrinsic properties of the lipid bilayer allow amyloid-β peptides to nucleate
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Amyloid-β aggregates play a causative role in Alzheimer’s disease. These aggregates are a product of the physical environment provided by the basic neuronal membrane, composed of a lipid bilayer. The intrinsic properties of the lipid bilayer allow amyloid-β peptides to nucleate and form well-ordered cross-β sheets within the membrane. Here, we correlate the aggregation of the hydrophobic fragment of the amyloid-β protein, Aβ25-35, with the hydrophobicity, fluidity, and charge density of a lipid bilayer. We summarize recent biophysical studies of model membranes and relate these to the process of aggregation in physiological systems. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Modeling and Design Optimization of Multifunctional Membrane Reactors for Direct Methane Aromatization
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 48; doi:10.3390/membranes7030048 -
Abstract
Due to the recent increase of natural gas production in the U.S., utilizing natural gas for higher-value chemicals has become imperative. Direct methane aromatization (DMA) is a promising process used to convert methane to benzene, but it is limited by low conversion of
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Due to the recent increase of natural gas production in the U.S., utilizing natural gas for higher-value chemicals has become imperative. Direct methane aromatization (DMA) is a promising process used to convert methane to benzene, but it is limited by low conversion of methane and rapid catalyst deactivation by coking. Past work has shown that membrane separation of the hydrogen produced in the DMA reactions can dramatically increase the methane conversion by shifting the equilibrium toward the products, but it also increases coke production. Oxygen introduction into the system has been shown to inhibit this coke production while not inhibiting the benzene production. This paper introduces a novel mathematical model and design to employ both methods in a multifunctional membrane reactor to push the DMA process into further viability. Multifunctional membrane reactors, in this case, are reactors where two different separations occur using two differently selective membranes, on which no systems studies have been found. The proposed multifunctional membrane design incorporates a hydrogen-selective membrane on the outer wall of the reaction zone, and an inner tube filled with airflow surrounded by an oxygen-selective membrane in the middle of the reactor. The design is shown to increase conversion via hydrogen removal by around 100%, and decrease coke production via oxygen addition by 10% when compared to a tubular reactor without any membranes. Optimization studies are performed to determine the best reactor design based on methane conversion, along with coke and benzene production. The obtained optimal design considers a small reactor (length = 25 cm, diameter of reaction tube = 0.7 cm) to subvert coke production and consumption of the product benzene as well as a high permeance (0.01 mol/s·m2·atm1/4) through the hydrogen-permeable membrane. This modeling and design approach sets the stage for guiding further development of multifunctional membrane reactor models and designs for natural gas utilization and other chemical reaction systems. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Past, Present and Future of Surgical Meshes: A Review
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 47; doi:10.3390/membranes7030047 -
Abstract
Surgical meshes, in particular those used to repair hernias, have been in use since 1891. Since then, research in the area has expanded, given the vast number of post-surgery complications such as infection, fibrosis, adhesions, mesh rejection, and hernia recurrence. Researchers have focused
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Surgical meshes, in particular those used to repair hernias, have been in use since 1891. Since then, research in the area has expanded, given the vast number of post-surgery complications such as infection, fibrosis, adhesions, mesh rejection, and hernia recurrence. Researchers have focused on the analysis and implementation of a wide range of materials: meshes with different fiber size and porosity, a variety of manufacturing methods, and certainly a variety of surgical and implantation procedures. Currently, surface modification methods and development of nanofiber based systems are actively being explored as areas of opportunity to retain material strength and increase biocompatibility of available meshes. This review summarizes the history of surgical meshes and presents an overview of commercial surgical meshes, their properties, manufacturing methods, and observed biological response, as well as the requirements for an ideal surgical mesh and potential manufacturing methods. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Thermodynamic Modeling of Gas Transport in Glassy Polymeric Membranes
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 46; doi:10.3390/membranes7030046 -
Abstract
Solubility and permeability of gases in glassy polymers have been considered with the aim of illustrating the applicability of thermodynamically-based models for their description and prediction. The solubility isotherms are described by using the nonequilibrium lattice fluid (NELF) (model, already known to be
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Solubility and permeability of gases in glassy polymers have been considered with the aim of illustrating the applicability of thermodynamically-based models for their description and prediction. The solubility isotherms are described by using the nonequilibrium lattice fluid (NELF) (model, already known to be appropriate for nonequilibrium glassy polymers, while the permeability isotherms are described through a general transport model in which diffusivity is the product of a purely kinetic factor, the mobility coefficient, and a thermodynamic factor. The latter is calculated from the NELF model and mobility is considered concentration-dependent through an exponential relationship containing two parameters only. The models are tested explicitly considering solubility and permeability data of various penetrants in three glassy polymers, PSf, PPh and 6FDA-6FpDA, selected as the reference for different behaviors. It is shown that the models are able to calculate the different behaviors observed, and in particular the permeability dependence on upstream pressure, both when it is decreasing as well as when it is increasing, with no need to invoke the onset of additional plasticization phenomena. The correlations found between polymer and penetrant properties with the two parameters of the mobility coefficient also lead to the predictive ability of the transport model. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Breath-Figure Self-Assembly, a Versatile Method of Manufacturing Membranes and Porous Structures: Physical, Chemical and Technological Aspects
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 45; doi:10.3390/membranes7030045 -
Abstract
The review is devoted to the physical, chemical, and technological aspects of the breath-figure self-assembly process. The main stages of the process and impact of the polymer architecture and physical parameters of breath-figure self-assembly on the eventual pattern are covered. The review is
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The review is devoted to the physical, chemical, and technological aspects of the breath-figure self-assembly process. The main stages of the process and impact of the polymer architecture and physical parameters of breath-figure self-assembly on the eventual pattern are covered. The review is focused on the hierarchy of spatial and temporal scales inherent to breath-figure self-assembly. Multi-scale patterns arising from the process are addressed. The characteristic spatial lateral scales of patterns vary from nanometers to dozens of micrometers. The temporal scale of the process spans from microseconds to seconds. The qualitative analysis performed in the paper demonstrates that the process is mainly governed by interfacial phenomena, whereas the impact of inertia and gravity are negligible. Characterization and applications of polymer films manufactured with breath-figure self-assembly are discussed. Full article
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Open AccessReview
Polymeric and Lipid Membranes—From Spheres to Flat Membranes and vice versa
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 44; doi:10.3390/membranes7030044 -
Abstract
Membranes are important components in a number of systems, where separation and control of the flow of molecules is desirable. Controllable membranes represent an even more coveted and desirable entity and their development is considered to be the next step of development. Typically,
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Membranes are important components in a number of systems, where separation and control of the flow of molecules is desirable. Controllable membranes represent an even more coveted and desirable entity and their development is considered to be the next step of development. Typically, membranes are considered on flat surfaces, but spherical capsules possess a perfect “infinite” or fully suspended membranes. Similarities and transitions between spherical and flat membranes are discussed, while applications of membranes are also emphasized. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Effects of ZnO Nanoparticle on the Gas Separation Performance of Polyurethane Mixed Matrix Membrane
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 43; doi:10.3390/membranes7030043 -
Abstract
Polyurethane (PU)-ZnO mixed matrix membranes (MMM) were fabricated and characterized for gas separation. A thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), a scanning electron microscope (SEM) test and an atomic-force microscopy (AFM) revealed that the physical properties and thermal stability of the membranes were improved through filler
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Polyurethane (PU)-ZnO mixed matrix membranes (MMM) were fabricated and characterized for gas separation. A thermogravimetric analysis (TGA), a scanning electron microscope (SEM) test and an atomic-force microscopy (AFM) revealed that the physical properties and thermal stability of the membranes were improved through filler loading. Hydrogen Bonding Index, obtained from the Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), demonstrate that the degree of phase separation in PU-ZnO 0.5 wt % MMM was more than the neat PU, while in PU-ZnO 1.0 wt % MMM, the phase mixing had increased. Compared to the neat membrane, the CO2 permeability of the MMMs increased by 31% for PU-ZnO 0.5 wt % MMM and decreased by 34% for 1.0 wt % ZnO MMM. The CO2/CH4 and CO2/N2 selectivities of PU-ZnO 0.5 wt % were 18.75 and 64.75, respectively. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
The Effect of the Pore Entrance on Particle Motion in Slit Pores: Implications for Ultrathin Membranes
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 42; doi:10.3390/membranes7030042 -
Abstract
Membrane rejection models generally neglect the effect of the pore entrance on intrapore particle transport. However, entrance effects are expected to be particularly important with ultrathin membranes, where membrane thickness is typically comparable to pore size. In this work, a 2D model was
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Membrane rejection models generally neglect the effect of the pore entrance on intrapore particle transport. However, entrance effects are expected to be particularly important with ultrathin membranes, where membrane thickness is typically comparable to pore size. In this work, a 2D model was developed to simulate particle motion for spherical particles moving at small Re and infinite Pe from the reservoir outside the pore into a slit pore. Using a finite element method, particles were tracked as they accelerated across the pore entrance until they reached a steady velocity in the pore. The axial position in the pore where particle motion becomes steady is defined as the particle entrance length (PEL). PELs were found to be comparable to the fluid entrance length, larger than the pore size and larger than the thickness typical of many ultrathin membranes. Results also show that, in the absence of particle diffusion, hydrodynamic particle–membrane interactions at the pore mouth result in particle “funneling” in the pore, yielding cross-pore particle concentration profiles focused at the pore centerline. The implications of these phenomena on rejection from ultrathin membranes are examined. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Development of pH-sensitive Dextran Derivatives with Strong Adjuvant Function and Their Application to Antigen Delivery
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 41; doi:10.3390/membranes7030041 -
Abstract
To achieve efficient cancer immunotherapy, the induction of cytotoxic T lymphocyte-based cellular immunity is necessary. In order to induce cellular immunity, antigen carriers that can deliver antigen into cytosol of antigen presenting cells and can activate these cells are required. We previously developed
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To achieve efficient cancer immunotherapy, the induction of cytotoxic T lymphocyte-based cellular immunity is necessary. In order to induce cellular immunity, antigen carriers that can deliver antigen into cytosol of antigen presenting cells and can activate these cells are required. We previously developed 3-methyl glutarylated dextran (MGlu-Dex) for cytoplasmic delivery of antigen via membrane disruption ability at weakly acidic pH in endosome/lysosomes. MGlu-Dex-modified liposomes delivered model antigens into cytosol of dendritic cells and induced antigen-specific cellular immunity. However, their antitumor effects were not enough to complete the regression of the tumor. In this study, antigen delivery performance of dextran derivatives was improved by the introduction of more hydrophobic spacer groups next to carboxyl groups. 2-Carboxycyclohexane-1-carboxylated dextran (CHex-Dex) was newly synthesized as pH-responsive dextran derivative. CHex-Dex formed stronger hydrophobic domains at extremely weak acidic pH and destabilized lipid membrane more efficiently than MGlu-Dex. CHex-Dex-modified liposomes were taken up by dendritic cells 10 times higher than MGlu-Dex-modified liposomes and delivered model antigen into cytosol. Furthermore, CHex-Dex achieved 600 times higher IL-12 production from dendritic cells than MGlu-Dex. Therefore, CHex-Dex is promising as multifunctional polysaccharide having both cytoplasmic antigen delivery function and strong activation property of dendritic cells for induction of cellular immunity. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Preparation of Porous Stainless Steel Hollow-Fibers through Multi-Modal Particle Size Sintering towards Pore Engineering
Membranes 2017, 7(3), 40; doi:10.3390/membranes7030040 -
Abstract
The sintering of metal powders is an efficient and versatile technique to fabricate porous metal elements such as filters, diffusers, and membranes. Neck formation between particles is, however, critical to tune the porosity and optimize mass transfer in order to minimize the densification
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The sintering of metal powders is an efficient and versatile technique to fabricate porous metal elements such as filters, diffusers, and membranes. Neck formation between particles is, however, critical to tune the porosity and optimize mass transfer in order to minimize the densification process. In this work, macro-porous stainless steel (SS) hollow-fibers (HFs) were fabricated by the extrusion and sintering of a dope comprised, for the first time, of a bimodal mixture of SS powders. The SS particles of different sizes and shapes were mixed to increase the neck formation between the particles and control the densification process of the structure during sintering. The sintered HFs from particles of two different sizes were shown to be more mechanically stable at lower sintering temperature due to the increased neck area of the small particles sintered to the large ones. In addition, the sintered HFs made from particles of 10 and 44 μm showed a smaller average pore size (<1 μm) as compared to the micron-size pores of sintered HFs made from particles of 10 μm only and those of 10 and 20 μm. The novel HFs could be used in a range of applications, from filtration modules to electrochemical membrane reactors. Full article
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