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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/C511174/1
Title: New Generation Membranes For Molecular Separations In Organic Liquids
Principal Investigator: Livingston, Professor A
Other Investigators:
Bismarck, Professor A Li, Professor K Steinke, Dr JHG
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Department of Chemical Engineering
Organisation: Imperial College London
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 03 October 2005 Ends: 02 October 2008 Value (£): 321,837
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Materials Characterisation Materials Processing
Materials Synthesis & Growth
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Manufacturing
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
Organic Solvent Nanofiltration (OSN) is an exciting new tool for molecular level separations in organic solutions, with many possible applications across chemical and pharmaceutical research and manufacturing. There are currently very few solvent stable membranes, and none available which offer stability and practical fluxes for polar aprotic solvents such as DMF and DMSO, or mixtures of these solvent s with water. In this proposal, we propose the development of controlled nanostructure membranes, whose permeation path dimensions can be controlled, and which are completely insoluble in the above solvent systems. We will develop an entirely new approach to OSN membrane formation, using heteroaromatic polymers to form membrane separating layers, and a casting-imprinting-process (CIP) to allow precise engineering of the permeation path dimensions. We expect that the detailed nano-scale engineering of getting our imprinting template molecules into, and out of, the membrane will be a major challenge and we want to test a new approach, the use of degradable templates, for this purpose. We intend to develop surface science techniques for characterising the resulting membrane separating layers, and to use a phenomenologically based model to relate the chemical nature of the polymer, and the nano-structure of the membrane, to the permeation properties of solvents and solutes.
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Organisation Website: http://www.imperial.ac.uk