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Open AccessArticle

Ionic Liquid Confined in Mesoporous Polymer Membrane with Improved Stability for CO2/N2 Separation

by Ming Tan 1,†, Jingting Lu 1,2,†, Yang Zhang 1 and Heqing Jiang 1,3,*
1
Qingdao Key Laboratory of Functional Membrane Material and Membrane Technology, Qingdao Institute of Bioenergy and Bioprocess Technology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Qingdao 266101, China
2
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
3
Institute of Coal Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Science, Taiyuan 030001, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contribute equally to this work.
Nanomaterials 2017, 7(10), 299; https://doi.org/10.3390/nano7100299
Received: 11 August 2017 / Revised: 20 September 2017 / Accepted: 25 September 2017 / Published: 29 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hybrid Nanomaterials for Future Technologies)
Supported ionic liquid membranes (SILMs) have a promising prospect of application in flue gas separation, owing to its high permeability and selectivity of CO2. However, existing SILMs have the disadvantage of poor stability due to the loss of ionic liquid from the large pores of the macroporous support. In this study, a novel SILM with high stability was developed by confining ionic liquid in a mesoporous polymer membrane. First, a mesoporous polymer membrane derived from a soluble, low-molecular-weight phenolic resin precursor was deposited on a porous Al2O3 support, and then 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium tetrafluoroborate ([emim][BF4]) was immobilized inside mesopores of phenolic resin, forming the SILM under vacuum. Effects of trans-membrane pressure difference on the SILM separation performance were investigated by measuring the permeances of CO2 and N2. The SILM exhibits a high ideal CO2/N2 selectivity of 40, and an actual selectivity of approximately 25 in a mixed gas (50% CO2 and 50% N2) at a trans-membrane pressure difference of 2.5 bar. Compared to [emim][BF4] supported by polyethersulfone membrane with a pore size of around 0.45 μm, the [emim][BF4] confined in a mesoporous polymer membrane exhibits an improved stability, and its separation performance remained stable for 40 h under a trans-membrane pressure difference of 1.5 bar in a mixed gas before the measurement was intentionally stopped. View Full-Text
Keywords: gas separation; supported membrane; mesoporous polymer; ionic liquid; high stability gas separation; supported membrane; mesoporous polymer; ionic liquid; high stability
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MDPI and ACS Style

Tan, M.; Lu, J.; Zhang, Y.; Jiang, H. Ionic Liquid Confined in Mesoporous Polymer Membrane with Improved Stability for CO2/N2 Separation. Nanomaterials 2017, 7, 299.

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