Special Issue "State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022"

A special issue of Membranes (ISSN 2077-0375).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 November 2022 | Viewed by 6417

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Marek Gryta
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Chemical Technology and Engineering, West Pomeranian University of Technology in Szczecin, ul. Pułaskiego 10, 70-322 Szczecin, Poland
Interests: membrane distillation; microfiltration; ultrafiltration; nanofiltration; reverse osmosis, polymeric membranes; surface modification; water and wastewater treatment; separation applying membranes; membrane bioreactors; membrane crystallization; fouling and scaling
Prof. Dr. Wojciech Kujawski
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Chemistry, Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń, 87-100 Toruń, Poland
Interests: ceramic membranes; polymeric membranes; surface modification; membrane modification; organic-inorganic hybrids; gas separation, membrane contactors, membrane distillation; pervaporation; ultrafiltration; nanofiltration; organic solvent nanofiltration; separation applying membranes
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Separation processes applied to purification of industrial streams and to water and wastewater treatment are the key factors in economic and sustainable world development. Membrane processes can replace traditional multiple-step technologies, increasing the efficiency and productivity of separation. Therefore, membrane processes are a fast-growing part of the separation technology.

In Poland, pressure-driven processes including reverse osmosis, nanofiltration and ultra- and microfiltration are already applied at an industrial scale for food and bioproduct processing. Moreover, a number of installations for wastewater treatment (membrane bioreactors) have been accomplished. Membrane technology is also used in the petrochemical and other industries. Academic scientists and industries in Poland have developed new types of membrane processes and demonstrated their application potential.

The present Special Issue is aimed at presenting the current state of the art and recent advances in membrane science and technology in Poland. It is our pleasure to invite you to submit review articles, original papers and communications for this Special Issue. Both experimental and theoretical contributions are welcome.

Topics of particular interest include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Development of new membrane materials and processes;
  • New application area for membrane technology;
  • Methods for mitigation of fouling and scaling;
  • Development of membrane module and membrane installations;
  • Modeling and simulations of membrane transport and membrane-based process operation;
  • Membrane education.

Prof. Dr. Marek Gryta
Prof. Dr. Wojciech Kujawski
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Membranes is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

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Article
The Impact of Operational Parameters on Polypropylene Membrane Performance during the Separation of Oily Saline Wastewaters by the Membrane Distillation Process
Membranes 2022, 12(4), 351; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes12040351 - 22 Mar 2022
Viewed by 412
Abstract
In the present study, membrane distillation (MD) was applied for the treatment of oily saline wastewaters produced on ships sailing the Baltic Sea. For comparison purposes, experiments were also carried out with model NaCl solutions, the Baltic Seawater and oil in water emulsions. [...] Read more.
In the present study, membrane distillation (MD) was applied for the treatment of oily saline wastewaters produced on ships sailing the Baltic Sea. For comparison purposes, experiments were also carried out with model NaCl solutions, the Baltic Seawater and oil in water emulsions. The commercial Accurel PP V8/2 membranes (Membrana GmbH, Germany) were used. In order to investigate the impact of the operational parameters on the process performance, the experiments were conducted under various values of the feed flow velocity (from 0.03 to 0.12 m/s) and the feed temperature (from 323 to 343 K). The obtained results highlight the potential of PP membranes application for a stable and reliable long-term treatment of oily wastewater. It was demonstrated that the permeate flux increased significantly with increasing feed temperature. However, the lower temperature ensured the limited scaling phenomenon during the treatment of oily wastewaters. Likewise, increasing the feed flow velocity was beneficial to the increase in the flux. Moreover, it was found that performing a cyclic rinsing of the module with a 3% HCl solution is an effective method to maintain a satisfactory module performance. The present study sheds light on improving the MD for the treatment of oily wastewaters. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Article
Fabrication of Polyamide-6 Membranes—The Effect of Gelation Time towards Their Morphological, Physical and Transport Properties
Membranes 2022, 12(3), 315; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes12030315 - 10 Mar 2022
Viewed by 500
Abstract
Porous polyamide-6 membranes were fabricated via a non-solvent induced phase inversion method, and the influence of gelation time on the properties of the membranes was investigated. Membrane samples with various gelation times were prepared. The evaluation of the membranes’ properties was carried out [...] Read more.
Porous polyamide-6 membranes were fabricated via a non-solvent induced phase inversion method, and the influence of gelation time on the properties of the membranes was investigated. Membrane samples with various gelation times were prepared. The evaluation of the membranes’ properties was carried out by various analyses and tests, such as scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, contact angle, wet and dry thickness, mean pore size measurements, porosity, water uptake, mechanical resistance, hydrodynamic water fluxes, membrane hydrodynamic permeability, and retention testing. The scanning electron microscopy images (both surface and cross-section) demonstrated that the increase in gelation time from 0 (M0) to 10 (M10) min led to the morphological change of membranes from isotropic (M0) to anisotropic (M10). The wet and dry thickness of the membranes showed a downward tendency with increasing gelation time. The M0 membrane exhibited the lowest bubble contact angle of 60 ± 4° and the lowest average surface roughness of 124 ± 22 nm. The highest values of mean pore size and porosity were observed for the M0 sample (0.710 ± 0.06 µm and 72 ± 2%, respectively), whereas the M10 membrane demonstrated the highest tensile strength of 4.1 MPa. The membrane water uptake was diminished from 62 to 39% by increasing the gelation time from 0 to 10 min. The M0 membrane also showed the highest hydrodynamic water flux among the prepared membranes, equal to 28.6 L m−2 h−1 (at Δp = 2 bar). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Article
Study of the Electrical Conductivity of Ion-Exchange Resins and Membranes in Equilibrium Solutions of Inorganic Electrolytes
Membranes 2022, 12(2), 243; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes12020243 - 20 Feb 2022
Viewed by 477
Abstract
The study of the electrical conductivity of ion-exchange membranes in equilibrium electrolyte solutions is of great importance for the theory of membrane processes, in particular for practical electrodialysis. The purpose of the work is to determine the electrical conductivity of industrial ion-exchange membranes [...] Read more.
The study of the electrical conductivity of ion-exchange membranes in equilibrium electrolyte solutions is of great importance for the theory of membrane processes, in particular for practical electrodialysis. The purpose of the work is to determine the electrical conductivity of industrial ion-exchange membranes MK-40 and MA-40, as well as their basis—granules of a bulk layer of industrial ion exchangers KU-2-8 and EDE-10p, by differential and modified contact methods in electrolyte solutions and the development of a new methodology that will give the values that are closest to the true ones; determination of the dependence of electrical membrane conductivity depending on the type of counterion and concentration equilibrium solution and granules of a bulk layer of ion exchangers on the volume fraction of a dry ion exchanger with different degrees of compaction. It is shown that the dependence of the electrical conductivity of diaphragms on the electrolyte concentration, according to theoretical ideas, disappears under compression. It has been experimentally established that the difference method gives lower values of electrical conductivity in the region of low concentrations. The data obtained by the contact method are in good agreement with the results obtained for compressed diaphragms. The membrane conductivity decreases with increasing ion size. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Communication
Three-Stage Membrane Treatment of Wastewater from Biodiesel Production-Preliminary Research
Membranes 2022, 12(1), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes12010039 - 28 Dec 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 398
Abstract
As biodiesel production as renewable fuel increases, so does the amount of wastewater resulting from this technology. Wastewater is generated during the so-called biodiesel washing, i.e., washing out glycerol and methanol with water. The purified biodiesel must meet international standards, such as EN [...] Read more.
As biodiesel production as renewable fuel increases, so does the amount of wastewater resulting from this technology. Wastewater is generated during the so-called biodiesel washing, i.e., washing out glycerol and methanol with water. The purified biodiesel must meet international standards, such as EN 14214 or the American ASTM D6751 standard. To fully say that biodiesel technology is environmentally friendly, the amount of wastewater should be minimized. It is also desirable that the purified water can be recycled to the technology. For this purpose, wastewater pre-treated by flotation, during which mainly oils are removed, was subjected to three-stage membrane separation. For each of the stages, the membrane was selected and characterized in terms of its separation capacity and stream stability. Starting with microfiltration, which was mainly aimed at reducing turbidity, affects the permeate flux in the following steps. Then, ultrafiltration and nanofiltration membranes were selected. These membranes were aimed at reducing the concentration of inorganic and organic substances. Consequently the cascade was composed of: MF-0.45 µm, UF-150 kDa, and NF-characterized by an 80% degree of desalination. The final permeate has a salt concentration of less than 0.15 g/L and can be reused in biodiesel technology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Article
Membrane Distillation of Saline Water Contaminated with Oil and Surfactants
Membranes 2021, 11(12), 988; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes11120988 - 17 Dec 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 612
Abstract
Application of the membrane distillation (MD) process for the treatment of high-salinity solutions contaminated with oil and surfactants represents an interesting area of research. Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate the effect of low-concentration surfactants in oil-contaminated high-salinity solutions on [...] Read more.
Application of the membrane distillation (MD) process for the treatment of high-salinity solutions contaminated with oil and surfactants represents an interesting area of research. Therefore, the aim of this study is to investigate the effect of low-concentration surfactants in oil-contaminated high-salinity solutions on the MD process efficiency. For this purpose, hydrophobic capillary polypropylene (PP) membranes were tested during the long-term MD studies. Baltic Sea water and concentrated NaCl solutions were used as a feed. The feed water was contaminated with oil collected from bilge water and sodium dodecyl sulphate (SDS). It has been demonstrated that PP membranes were non-wetted during the separation of pure NaCl solutions over 960 h of the module exploitation. The presence of oil (100–150 mg/L) in concentrated NaCl solutions caused the adsorption of oil on the membranes surface and a decrease in the permeate flux of 30%. In turn, the presence of SDS (1.5–2.5 mg/L) in the oil-contaminated high-salinity solutions slightly accelerated the phenomenon of membrane wetting. The partial pores’ wetting accelerated the internal scaling and affected degradation of the membrane’s structure. Undoubtedly, the results obtained in the present study may have important implications for understanding the effect of low-concentration SDS on MD process efficiency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Article
Upgrading Biogas from Small Agricultural Sources into Biomethane by Membrane Separation
Membranes 2021, 11(12), 938; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes11120938 - 27 Nov 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 647
Abstract
The agriculture sector in Poland could provide 7.8 billion m3 of biogas per year, but this potential would be from dispersed plants of a low capacity. In the current study, a membrane process was investigated for the upgrading biogas to biomethane that [...] Read more.
The agriculture sector in Poland could provide 7.8 billion m3 of biogas per year, but this potential would be from dispersed plants of a low capacity. In the current study, a membrane process was investigated for the upgrading biogas to biomethane that conforms to the requirements for grid gas in Poland. It was assumed that such a process is based on membranes made from modified polysulfone or polyimide, available in the market in Air Products PRISM PA1020 and UBE UMS-A5 modules, respectively. The case study has served an agricultural biogas plant in southern Poland, which provides the stream of 5 m3 (STP) h−1 of biogas with a composition of CH4 (52 vol.%), CO2 (46.3 vol.%), N2 (1.6 vol.%) and O2 (0.1 vol.%), after a pretreatment. It was theoretically shown that this is possible to obtain the biomethane stream of at least 96 vol.% of CH4 purity, with the concentration of the other biogas components below their respective thresholds, as required in Poland for gas fuel “E”, with methane recovery of up to 87.5% and 71.6% for polyimide and polysulfone membranes, respectively. The energetic efficiency of the separation process is comparable for both membrane materials, as expressed by power excess index, which reaches up to 51.3 kWth kWel−1 (polyimide) and 40.7 kWth kWel−1 (polysulfone). In turn, the membrane productivity was significantly higher in the case of the polyimide membrane (up to 38.3 kWth m−2) than those based on the polysulfone one (up to 3.13 kWth m−2). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Article
Low- and High-Pressure Membrane Separation in the Production of Process Water for Coke Quenching
Membranes 2021, 11(12), 937; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes11120937 - 27 Nov 2021
Viewed by 587
Abstract
Although the time for operating mines and coking plants in many countries is coming to an end due to climate change, we must still ensure that the pollution generated by this source of the economy is minimized. Despite the several stages of treatment [...] Read more.
Although the time for operating mines and coking plants in many countries is coming to an end due to climate change, we must still ensure that the pollution generated by this source of the economy is minimized. Despite the several stages of treatment of the coke-oven effluent, completed with nitrification and denitrification processes preceding final sedimentation, the stream obtained does not meet the requirements of water for coke quenching. That is why the stream after biodegradation and sedimentation was treated on membrane units to ensure water reusing in the coking plant. As the subjected stream contained both solid and dissolved pollutants, a two-stage system was proposed: low- and high-pressure membrane filtration. Industrial modules were tested on pilot units operating under industrial plant conditions. In the case of the ultrafiltration process, all the tested ultrafiltration modules fulfilled the primary task. All of them separated almost completely the turbidities present in the stream, which would have disturbed the operation of the high-pressure plant. Considering the decrease in permeate flux and the possibility of cleaning, a PCI membrane made of PVDF tubes with a diameter of 12.5 mm and pore size of 20 μm was selected. Regarding the high-pressure membrane filtration, the reverse osmosis membrane was significantly better in the removal efficiency of both organic and inorganic dissolved substances. An operating pressure of 3 MPa was chosen for the system. Hence, membrane processes, which are not used as stand-alone treatment units for coke-oven effluents, function well as a final treatment stage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Article
Resistance of Polypropylene Membrane to Oil Fouling during Membrane Distillation
Membranes 2021, 11(8), 552; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes11080552 - 22 Jul 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 925
Abstract
The influence of oil emulsion presence in the water on the course of water desalination by membrane distillation was studied. The feed water was contaminated by oil collected from the bilge water. The impact of feed composition on the wetting resistance of hydrophobic [...] Read more.
The influence of oil emulsion presence in the water on the course of water desalination by membrane distillation was studied. The feed water was contaminated by oil collected from the bilge water. The impact of feed composition on the wetting resistance of hydrophobic polypropylene membranes was evaluated during long-term studies. Two types of the capillary membranes fabricated by thermally induced phase separation method were tested. It has been found that these membranes were non-wetted during the separation of NaCl solutions over a period of 500 h of modules exploitation. The addition of oil (5–100 mg/L) to the feed caused a progressive decline of the permeate flux up to 30%; however, the applied hydrophobic membranes retained their non-wettability for the consecutive 2400 h of the process operation. It was indicated that several compounds containing the carbonyl group were formed on the membranes surface during the process. These hydrophilic compounds facilitated the water adsorption on the surface of polypropylene which restricted the oil deposition on the membranes used. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Review

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Review
Membrane-Based Solutions for the Polish Coal Mining Industry
Membranes 2021, 11(8), 638; https://doi.org/10.3390/membranes11080638 - 18 Aug 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1023
Abstract
Poland still relies largely on coal for energy generation, which creates environmental problems connected to the mining process, particularly the issue of saline waste water discharge. Membrane-based zero liquid discharge systems can be employed to recover important resources from coal mine waste waters, [...] Read more.
Poland still relies largely on coal for energy generation, which creates environmental problems connected to the mining process, particularly the issue of saline waste water discharge. Membrane-based zero liquid discharge systems can be employed to recover important resources from coal mine waste waters, such as demineralized water, salt, magnesium hydroxide, and gypsum. In this paper, we present a historical overview of proposed membrane-based solutions for the Polish coal mining industry and discuss possible further areas of research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Membrane Science and Technology in Poland 2021, 2022)
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Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Resistance of polypropylene membrane for oil fouling during membrane distillation

Author: Marek Gryta; [email protected]

Affiliation: West Pomeranian University of Technology in Szczecin, Faculty of Chemical Technology and Engineering, ul. Pułaskiego 10, 70-322 Szczecin, Poland

Abstract:

The influence of oil emulsion on the course of water desalination by membrane distillation was studied. The feed water was contaminated by oil collected from the bilge water. The impact of feed composition on the wetting resistance of hydrophobic polypropylene membranes was evaluated during long-term studies. Two types of the capillary membranes fabricated by thermally induced phase separation method were tested. Furthermore, these membranes were non-wetted during the separation of NaCl solutions over a period of 500 h of modules exploitation. The addition of oil to the feed (5-100 mg/L) caused a progressive decline of the permeate flux up to 30%, but the applied hydrophobic membranes retained their non-wettability for the consecutive 2400 h of process operation. It was indicated, that that several compounds containing the carbonyl group were formed on the membranes surface during the process. These hydrophilic compounds facilitated the water adsorption on the surface of polypropylene which restricted the oil deposition on the membranes used.

Keywords: membrane distillation; oily wastewater; polypropylene membrane; membrane wettability

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