Synthesis and fabrication of nanostructured hydrophobic polyazole membranes for low-energy water recovery

Husnul Maab, Lijo Francis, Ahmad Al-saadi, Cyril Aubry, Noreddine Ghaffour, Gary Amy, Suzana P. Nunes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

77 Citations (Scopus)


Aromatic fluorinated polyoxadiazoles (F-POD) and polytriazoles (F-PT) were synthesized and for the first time manufactured into porous membranes by phase inversion and by electrospinning. The phase inversion F-POD membranes had a mean flow pore size (MFP) of 51nm, while for F-PT it was around 74nm. The electrospun membranes had a much larger pore size, the MFP for F-POD membrane was around 1.7μm and for F-PT it was 2.7μm. The membranes were tested for desalination of Red Sea water using direct contact membrane distillation (DCMD). By combining the high polymer hydrophobicity and high porosity, apparent contact angles up to 162° were obtained, assuring the operation with practically no liquid water leakage under pressure up to 0.9bar. Salt selectivity as high as 99.95% and water fluxes as high as 85Lm -2h -1 were demonstrated, operating at 80°C feed temperature and 22°C permeate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-19
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2012



  • Membrane distillation
  • Membranes
  • Polyoxadiazole
  • Polytriazole

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation

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