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Open AccessArticle

Efficient Oil/Water Separation Membrane Derived from Super-Flexible and Superhydrophilic Core–Shell Organic/Inorganic Nanofibrous Architectures

1
School of Textile and Garment, Anhui Polytechnic University, Beijing Road, Wuhu 241000, China
2
Energy Research Institute @ NTU, Interdisciplinary Graduate School, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798, Singapore
3
School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore 639798, Singapore
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2019, 11(6), 974; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym11060974
Received: 9 May 2019 / Revised: 25 May 2019 / Accepted: 27 May 2019 / Published: 3 June 2019
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Abstract

To address the worldwide oil and water separation issue, a novel approach was inspired by natural phenomena to synthesize superhydrophilic and underwater superoleophobic organic/inorganic nanofibrous membranes via a scale up fabrication approach. The synthesized membranes possess a delicate organic core of PVDF-HFP and an inorganic shell of a CuO nanosheet structure, which endows super-flexible properties owing to the merits of PVDF-HFP backbones, and superhydrophilic functions contributed by the extremely rough surface of a CuO nanosheet anchored on flexible PVDF-HFP. Such an organic core and inorganic shell architecture not only functionalizes membrane performance in terms of antifouling, high flux, and low energy consumption, but also extends the lifespan by enhancing its mechanical strength and alkaline resistance to broaden its applicability. The resultant membrane exhibits good oil/water separation efficiency higher than 99.7%, as well as excellent anti-fouling properties for various oil/water mixtures. Considering the intrinsic structural innovation and its integrated advantages, this core–shell nanofibrous membrane is believed to be promising for oil/water separation, and this facile approach is also easy for scaled up manufacturing of functional organic/inorganic nanofibrous membranes with insightful benefits for industrial wastewater treatment, sensors, energy production, and many other related areas. View Full-Text
Keywords: core shell; flexible; oil water separation; superhydrophilicity; underwater superoleophobicity core shell; flexible; oil water separation; superhydrophilicity; underwater superoleophobicity
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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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Liu, Z.; Qin, D.; Zhao, J.; Feng, Q.; Li, Z.; Bai, H.; Sun, D.D. Efficient Oil/Water Separation Membrane Derived from Super-Flexible and Superhydrophilic Core–Shell Organic/Inorganic Nanofibrous Architectures. Polymers 2019, 11, 974.

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