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Fibers 2017, 5(3), 33;

Effects of Surfactants on the Morphology and Properties of Electrospun Polyetherimide Fibers

Department of Chemical Engineering, Jazan University, Jazan 45142, Saudi Arabia
Biosciences and Water Filtration Division, Parker-Hannifin Corporation, Oxnard, CA 93030, USA
Department of Chemical Engineering, Royal Commission Yanbu Industrial College, Yanbu 41912, Saudi Arabia
Hyundai Motor Company, Seoul 18280, Korea
American Air Filters, Louisville, KY 40223, USA
Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, The University of Akron, Akron, OH 44325, USA
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Stephen C. Bondy
Received: 1 July 2017 / Revised: 21 August 2017 / Accepted: 21 August 2017 / Published: 5 September 2017
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Electrospun fibers often have beads as byproducts. Bead formation can be substantially minimized by the introduction of additives, such as ionic salts or surfactants, to the electrospinning polymeric solution. Polyetherimide (PEI) fibers were fabricated using electrospinning. Four different additives, Lithium Chloride (LiCl), Sodium Chloride (NaCl), Triton X-100 and Hexadecyltrimethylammonium Bromide (HTAB) were utilized to alter the polymer solution electrical conductivity and surface tensions. The effects of solution conductivity and surface tension on the electrospinning and the thermal, mechanical stability of the polymeric fibers were investigated. Morphology, thermal properties, permeability and mechanical strength of the fiber mats were investigated using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Thermogravimetric Analysis (TGA), Frazier Permeability Test, and Tensile tester respectively. The addition of 1.5wt.% HTAB was found to be the optimum concentration to produce PEI fibers without beads. The addition of HTAB produced fiber mats with higher air permeability, higher thermal stability and higher mechanical strength in comparison to the other additives. Finally, a filtration test was conducted on a simple custom model to compare the performance of beaded and non-beaded PEI fiber mats. The non-beaded PEI fiber mat performed better in terms of both separation efficiency (%E) and differential pressure drop (ΔP) separating water droplets from diesel fuel. View Full-Text
Keywords: polyetherimide; electrospinning; nanofibers; surfactant and filtration polyetherimide; electrospinning; nanofibers; surfactant and filtration

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Abutaleb, A.; Lolla, D.; Aljuhani, A.; Shin, H.U.; Rajala, J.W.; Chase, G.G. Effects of Surfactants on the Morphology and Properties of Electrospun Polyetherimide Fibers. Fibers 2017, 5, 33.

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