Hierarchical ZnO nanostructured membrane for multifunctional environmental applications

Hongwei Bai, Zhaoyang Liu, Darren Delai Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Citations (Scopus)


To counter the global water crisis such as water resources scarcity and water quality deterioration, membrane filtration has been widely used as a promising technology. Recently, nano-materials and its structured membranes demonstrated multifunctional water purification capability in terms of decontamination and disinfection. Here, hierarchical nitrogen (N)-doped "nut-like" ZnO nanostructured material was hydrothermally synthesized at large scale. This hierarchical N-doped "nut-like" ZnO nanostructured material was well characterized and successfully assembled on a piece of polymer membrane surface to create a multifunctional membrane. This newly developed membrane demonstrated high pollutants removal ability via rejection and photodegradation, and strong antibacterial growth ability under visible light irradiation. At the same time, this novel membrane holds the potential to produce clean water at a constant high flux. The experimental results indicated that the hierarchical N-doped ZnO "nut-like" nanostructured material enhanced the photocatalytic activity in a comparison to commercial ZnO powder. This is caused by enlarging the specific surface area and enhancing the light utilization rate. It is reasonable to believe this hierarchical N-doped "nut-like" ZnO nanostructured membrane would benefit the water purification field.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-17
Number of pages7
JournalColloids and Surfaces A: Physicochemical and Engineering Aspects
Publication statusPublished - 20 Sep 2012
Externally publishedYes



  • " Nut-like" nanostructured material
  • Environmental applications
  • Hierarchical
  • Membrane
  • ZnO

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Colloid and Surface Chemistry

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