Bioinspired Membrane Engineering for Water Applications: Examples of Enhanced Membranes, Mass Transfer and Biofilm Control

Author(s): Anthony G. Fane*, Rong Wang.

Journal Name: Current Organic Chemistry

Volume 21 , Issue 17 , 2017

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Graphical Abstract:


Objective: This paper describes examples of membrane engineering for water that take inspiration from biology. Next generation, high permeability, desalination membranes incorporating natural Aquaporin water channels are described. A potential consequence of raised flux is boundary layer mass transfer limitation which can be alleviated by unsteady shear stress, such as vibrations, adopted by some aquatic species to improve respiration. In many applications, biofilms on membranes cause detrimental biofouling.

Method: Various triggers, or agents, in the biofilm development cycle are being used to control the fouling by ‘biomimicry’.

Conclusion: Beneficial biofilms can also exist on membranes, as exemplified by the gravity-driven biostabilized UF process for water treatment being evaluated as a low energy pretreatment for seawater RO.

Keywords: Desalination, aquaporin, membranes, biofilms, water applications, mass transfer.

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Article Details

Year: 2017
Page: [1665 - 1670]
Pages: 6
DOI: 10.2174/1385272820666160608124841
Price: $58

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