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Membranes 2018, 8(4), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes8040125

Synthesis and Gas Transport Properties of Poly(2,6-dimethyl-1,4-phenylene oxide)–Silica Nanocomposite Membranes

Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, University of Ottawa, 161 Louis-Pasteur, Ottawa, ON K1N 6N5, Canada
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Received: 25 October 2018 / Revised: 30 November 2018 / Accepted: 30 November 2018 / Published: 4 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanocomposite Membranes)
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Abstract

The emulsion polymerized mixed matrix (EPMM) method is a new approach to prepare nanocomposite membranes, in which inorganic nanoparticles are synthesized in situ at the interface of a dispersed aqueous phase in a continuous phase of polymer solution. In this paper, we report the synthesis and characterization of poly(2,6-dimethyl-1,4-phenylene oxide) (PPO)-based EPMM membranes, in which silica nanoparticles are synthesized by the polymerization of tetraethylorthosilicate (TEOS) in the presence of two different co-solvents, ethanol and acetone, which are soluble in both the aqueous phase and the polymer solution. The EPPM membranes prepared in the presence of acetone show greater conversions of TEOS and a different structure of the synthesized silica nanoparticles compared to the EPMM membranes prepared in the presence of ethanol. The former membranes are both more permeable and more selective for O2/N2 and CO2/CH4. Both types of EPMM membranes are more permeable than the reference PPO membranes. However, while their O2/N2 selectivity is practically unchanged, their CO2/CH4 selectivity is decreased compared to the reference PPO membranes. View Full-Text
Keywords: nanocomposite membranes; gas separation; poly(2,6-dimethyl-1,4-phenylene oxide); tetraethylorthosilicate nanocomposite membranes; gas separation; poly(2,6-dimethyl-1,4-phenylene oxide); tetraethylorthosilicate
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Bissadi, G.; Melo Santos, T.; Kruczek, B. Synthesis and Gas Transport Properties of Poly(2,6-dimethyl-1,4-phenylene oxide)–Silica Nanocomposite Membranes. Membranes 2018, 8, 125.

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