Highly Selective Multilayer Polymer Thin Films for CO2/N2 Separation

Multilayer thin films of poly(ethylene oxide) (PEO) and poly(methacrylic acid) (PMAA), deposited via layer-by-layer (LbL) assembly from aqueous solutions, for investigated for CO2/N2 separation. Eight and ten bilayer (217 and 289 nm thick, respectively) PEO/PMAA thin films deposited on a 25 um polystyrene substrate exhibit CO2/N2 selectivities of 142 and 136, respectively. These are the highest reported to-date for this gas pair separation using a homogeneous polymer film. While further work remains to improve Co2 permeability, these results indicate the potential of LbL assemblies as standalone CO2 separation membranes for low-flux/high-purity applications or as part of a composite and/or mixed-matrix membrane for high-flux applications.

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Song, Y.; Lugo, E. L.; Powell, S.; Tzeng, P.; Wilhite, B. A.; Grunlan, J. C. J. Polym. Sci. Part B Polym. Phys. 201755, 1730.

Published in August 2017