CO2/N2 Gas Separation Using Nanocomposite Membranes Comprised of Ethylene-Propylene-Diene Monomer/Multi-Walled Carbon Nanotube (EPDM/MWCNT)

Zeinab Rajabi, Faramarz Afshar Taromi, Ali Kargari, Hamidreza Sanaeepur
2015 علوم و تکنولوژی پلیمر  
Nanocomposite membranes of ethylene-propylene-diene monomer/multiwalled carbon nanotubes (EPDM/MWCNT) were prepared by solution casting, solvent evaporation and cross-link technique to be applied in CO2/N2 gas separation. Both simple and functionalized MWCNTs have been used. The effect of incorporated different amounts multiwalled carbon nanotubes (0-4 wt%), of both simple and functionalized types, on the performance of nanocomposite membranes was studied. Fourier transform infrared (FTIR)
more » ... nfrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and field emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM) were used to evaluate the structural/morphological observations of nanocomposite membranes. Comparing the FTIR results of pure and functionalized nanotubes confirmed the presence of carboxylic groups on the functional carbon nanotubes. The FESEM images indicated that at low concentrations, carbon nanotube particles were dispersed well in the EPDM matrix, but they formed agglomerates at concentrations beyond 1 wt%. By incorporation of MWCNTs, the mechanicalproperties of nanocomposite membranes including tensile strength, Young's modulus and elongation-at-break considerably were improved. By increasing carbon nanotube loading up to 0.75 wt%, the permeability of both CO2 and N2 and the CO2/N2 selectivity increased. Further loading led to higher permeability of CO2/N2, while the selectivity ofthe system decreased that could be attributed to further agglomeration of carbon nanotube particles. Furthermore, functionalization of carbon nanotubes improved their dispersion and the mechanical properties and gas separation performance of nanocomposite membranes. Through functionalizing of MWCNTs, both the CO2 permeability and CO2/N2 selectivity of the optimum membrane (0.75 wt% MWCNTs) increased from 37.95 and 18.03 Barrer to 57.57 and 23.43 Barrer, respectively. At ambient temperature, by the increase in feed pressure a slight increase in the permeability of both CO2 and N2 gases was observed, while the CO2/N2 selectivity was not highly affected.
doi:10.22063/jipst.2015.1257 doaj:792c3e7ddb534b0fb02cb0cbda6ffaf5 fatcat:e32uzo45dffgnoggankok7qpki