Monovalent cation selective crown ether containing poly(arylene ether ketone)/SPEEK blend membranes

Sinem Tas, Bram Zoetebier, Mark A. Hempenius, Gyula J. Vancso, Dorothea C. Nijmeijer

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Blend membranes of sulfonated poly(ether ether ketone) (SPEEK) and poly(arylene ether ketone) (PAEK) derivatives containing crown ether units in the main chain (CPAEK) were prepared and characterized in terms of water swelling and ion exchange capacity (IEC). The miscibility of the polymers was verified by DSC and HR-SEM. Ion transport characteristics of the membranes were established for the monovalent ions Li+ and K+ and the separation of these ions by the cation exchange membranes was investigated. Diffusion experiments for aqueous KCl, LiCl and their mixtures were carried out with pure SPEEK membranes as well as with the CPAEK/SPEEK membranes. Blending significantly decreased the ion permeability due to cation-crown ether complexation and increased the hydrophobicity of the matrix. The K+ over Li+ selectivity of the SPEEK membrane was enhanced by blending SPEEK with CPAEK by a factor of nearly 4, indicating that the presence of a crown ether polymer changes the relative transport of the ions in the membrane.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)55635-55642
JournalRSC advances
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • METIS-317908
  • IR-101400


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