Production, characterization and utilization of epoxy spherical membrane filter prepared by an advanced aqueous method
Sea, Bee Ing
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In recent years, the public raise important questions about the safety of water. The threat of harmful contaminants in water can no longer be ignore. Although many advanced products have been develop and applied in wastewater treatment, however these membranes are expensive in operating cost and short supply prohibiting their wide application. Thereby, the idea to produce an epoxy spherical membrane (ESM) with multiple micro-scale pores for industry wastewater treatment is developed. In this research, an advanced aqueous method is use to produce ESM based on the water in oil in water (W/O/W) double emulsion polymerization technique. This method is simple and environmentally friendly because no solvent is used; no emission of volatile product. It is feasible to scale up. Epoxy and polyamide are in liquid form at room temperature that enables to be emulsified. Reactive polyamide originated from vegetable oil was selected, which has met all the requirements to be able emulsifying without surfactants nor emulsifier. Calcium carbonate filled in ESM acted as an emulsifying promoter producing fine epoxy particles. It also improved the mechanical properties, thermal stability, and oils coagulation ability during filtering and reduced the manufacturing cost. Distilled water acted as a dispersed phase in epoxy droplets and continuous phase in emulsion system. It worked as a template in ESM and vaporized during curing creating a complex pore structure in ESM. ESMC (epoxy spherical membrane column) built from epoxy particles with complex pore structure enabled to apply the spherical membrane principle for filtering and separation. ESMC was founds effective in removing the contaminated carbon black and copper powder from the water but allow slower effluent flow rate. Separation behavior of palm oilwater and engine oil-water solutions were successfully gravitationally separates whereby clear water was flow out first then followed by oils. Glass column was perform a better filtering efficiency than PP column. Larger diameter of column allowed faster filtrate's flow rate but poorer filtering effectiveness.