Blocking chemical warfare agent simulants by graphene oxide/polymer multilayer membrane based on hydrogen bonding and size sieving effect

Youna Kim, Moonhyun Choi, Jiwoong Heo, Sungwon Jung, Dongwon Ka, Hyeji Lee, Sang Wook Kang, Heesoo Jung, Sangmin Lee, Youngho Jin, Jinkee Hong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Chemical warfare agents (CWAs) are toxic materials that cause death by contact with the skin or by respiration. Although studies on detoxification of CWAs have been intensively conducted, studies that block CWAs permeation are rare. In this study, for blocking CWAs, a multilayer thin film composed of linear polyethylenimine (LPEI) and graphene oxide (GO) is simply prepared through a spray-assisted Layer-by-Layer (LbL) assembly process. LPEI could change its morphology dependent on pH, which is known as a representative hydrogen donor and acceptor. By controlling the shape of the polymer chain, a heterogenous film could have a loose or dense inner structure. CWAs mainly move through diffusion and have hydrogen bonding sites. Therefore, the heterogeneous film can limit CWAs movement based on controlling pathways and hydrogen bonds within the film. The protective effect of this membrane is investigated using dimethyl methylphosphonate (DMMP), a nerve gas simulant. DMMP vapor transmittance rate (DVTR) and N2 permeance of LPEI/GO are 67.91 g/m2 day and 34,293.04 GPU. It means that the protection efficiency is 72.65%. Although this membrane has a thin thickness (100 nm), it shows a high protective effect with good breathability. And water/DMMP selectivity of the membrane is 66.63. Since this multilayer membrane shows efficient protection performance with a simple preparation method, it has a high potential for applications such as protective suits and masks.

Original languageEnglish
Article number127884
JournalJournal of Hazardous Materials
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Apr 5

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by Agency for Defense Development under project 912762101 . This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MSIT) (No. 2021R1A4A3030268 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier B.V.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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