The use of crosslinked polyethylene for the manufacturing of membranes
Van Wyk, Albertus Maritz
MetadataShow full item record
Increasing environmental awareness over the past decade as well as stringent environmental laws forced all factories to invest in water treatment processes for effluent treatment before discharge or re-use. Most of these effluent treatment processes utilize membranes as the physical. barrier for separation. The membranes used in water applications are expensive and alternative materials and production techniques will increase the viability of membrane separation processes. Experiments conducted on irradiated polyethylene showed that some of its properties were enhanced while others deteriorated. However, the enhanced properties make the polyethylene, in particular ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene, an ideal membrane material. The manufactured membranes were tested in extraction experiments, and satisfactory results were obtained. Permeation studies on the membranes compared favourably with similar studies done on commercially available membranes. An extraction rate of 1.08 g/(m2h) nickel was achieved. A preliminary cost evaluation showed that these membranes can be manufactured at a low cost (R13.45/m2). and can be applied as supported liquid membranes. Future research should focus on methods to decrease the brittleness and stiffness of the membranes.
- Engineering