Reverse osmosis membrane functionalized with aminated graphene oxide and polydopamine nanospheres plugging for enhanced NDMA rejection and anti-fouling performance

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Article number139557
Journal / PublicationChemosphere
Volume338
Online published19 Jul 2023
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023

Abstract

The use of reverse osmosis (RO) for water reclamation has become an essential part of the water supply owing to the ever-increasing water demand and the utmost performance of the RO membranes. Despite the global RO implementation, its inferior rejection against low molecular weight contaminants of emerging concerns (CECs) (i.e., N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA)) and propensity to fouling remain bottle-neck thus affecting process robustness for water reuse. This study aims to enhance both the rejection and antifouling properties of the RO membrane. Herein for the first time, we report RO membrane modification using polydopamine nanospheres (PDAns) followed by aminated-graphene oxide (AGO) deposition as an effective approach to overcome these challenges. The modification of the RO membrane using PDAns-AGO resulted in 89.3 ± 2.7% rejection compared to the pristine RO membrane which demonstrated 69.2 ± 2.1% NDMA rejection. This significant improvement can be ascribed to the plugging and shielding of defective areas (formed during interfacial polymerization) of the polyamide layer through active PDAns and AGO layers and to the added sieving mechanism that arose through narrow channels of the AGO owing to its reduction. Moreover, the in-situ and non-destructive fouling monitoring using optical coherence tomography (OCT) revealed that the PDAns-AGO coating enhanced both the anti-scaling and anti-biofouling characteristics. The improved hydrophilicity and bactericidal effect together with roughness and surface charge suppression synergistically enhanced anti-fouling properties. This study provides a new direction for safe and cost-effective water reuse practices. The membrane with high selectivity against CECs such as NDMA has the potential to eliminate permeate staging using second pass RO and other advanced oxidation processes which are utilized as a tertiary treatment to make reclaimed water suitable for potable/non-potable application. © 2023 Elsevier Ltd.

Research Area(s)

  • Ant-biofouling, Anti-scaling, High rejection, Reverse osmosis, Surface modification

Citation Format(s)

Reverse osmosis membrane functionalized with aminated graphene oxide and polydopamine nanospheres plugging for enhanced NDMA rejection and anti-fouling performance. / Khanzada, Noman Khalid; Rehman, Shazia; Kharraz, Jehad A. et al.
In: Chemosphere, Vol. 338, 139557, 10.2023.

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review