Pervaporation of alcohol-toluene mixtures through polymer blend membranes of poly(acrylic acid) and poly(vinyl alcohol)

H.C. Park, R.M. Meertens, M.H.V. Mulder, C.A. Smolders

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Abstract

Homogeneous membranes were prepared by blending poly(acrylic acid) with poly(vinyl alcohol). These blend membranes were evaluated for the selective separation of alcohols from toluene by pervaporation. The flux and selectivity of the membranes were determined both as a function of the blend composition and of the feed mixture composition. The results showed that a polymer blending method could be very useful to develop new membranes with improved permselectivity. The pervaporation properties could be optimized by adjusting the blend composition. All the blend membranes tested showed a decrease in flux with increasing poly(vinyl alcohol) content for both methanol¿toluene and ethanol¿toluene liquid mixtures. The alcohols permeated preferentially through all tested blend membranes, and the selectivity values increased with increasing poly(vinyl alcohol) content. The pervaporation characteristics of the blend membranes were also strongly influenced by the feed mixture composition. The fluxes increased exponentially with increasing alcohol concentration in the feed mixtures, whereas the selectivities decreased for both liquid mixtures.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-274
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of membrane science
Volume90
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1994

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