Ultrathin graphene oxide membranes on freestanding carbon nanotube supports for enhanced selective permeation in organic solvents

Seon Joon Kim, Dae Woo Kim, Kyeong Min Cho, Kyoung Min Kang, Junghoon Choi, Daeok Kim, Hee Tae Jung

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15 Citations (Scopus)


Among the various factors required for membranes in organic solvent separations, the stability of membrane supports is critical in the preparation of membranes with universal chemical stability, mechanical flexibility, and high flux. In this study, nanoporous freestanding carbon nanotube (CNT) films were fabricated and utilized as supports for enhanced permeation in organic solvents. The excellent chemical stability of the CNT support allowed it to withstand various organic solvents such as toluene, acetone, and dimethylformamide. In addition, the structural stability and high pore density of CNT supports allowed the deposition of an ultrathin selective layer for an enhanced-flux membrane. Membrane performance was demonstrated by depositing a thin graphene oxide (GO) layer on the CNT support; GO was selected because of its high chemical stability. CNT-supported GO membranes effectively blocked molecules with molecular weight larger than ~800 g mol-1 while allowing the fast permeation of small molecules such as naphthalene (permeation was 50 times faster than that through thick GO membranes) and maintaining selective permeation in harsh solvents even after 72 hours of operation. We believe that the developed CNT support can provide fundamental insights in utilizing selective materials toward organic solvent membranes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1959
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Dec 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General

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