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Ultrafast seawater desalination with covalent organic framework membranes

Meidi Wang, Penghui Zhang, Xu Liang, Junyi Zhao, Yawei Liu, Yu Cao, Hongjian Wang, Yu Chen, Zhiming Zhang, Fusheng Pan (), Zhenjie Zhang () and Zhongyi Jiang ()
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Meidi Wang: Tianjin University
Penghui Zhang: Nankai University
Xu Liang: Tianjin University
Junyi Zhao: Tianjin University
Yawei Liu: Chinese Academy of Sciences
Yu Cao: Tianjin University
Hongjian Wang: Tianjin University
Yu Chen: Chinese Academy of Sciences
Zhiming Zhang: Tianjin University
Fusheng Pan: Tianjin University
Zhenjie Zhang: Nankai University
Zhongyi Jiang: Tianjin University

Nature Sustainability, 2022, vol. 5, issue 6, 518-526

Abstract: Abstract The lack of access to clean water for billions of people represents a fundamental global sustainability challenge that must be addressed. Seawater desalination using membrane technologies provides a promising solution; however, the dominating desalination membranes often show low permeation flux and deficient fouling resistance. Here we achieve ultrafast desalination by taking advantage of covalent organic framework (COF) membranes where TaPa-SO3H nanosheets are linked by TpTTPA nanoribbons through electrostatic and π–π interactions to form an ordered and robust structure. The optimum COF membrane exhibits excellent rejection of NaCl (99.91%) and more importantly an ultrafast water flux of 267 kg m−2 h−1, which outperforms the state-of-the-art designs and is 4–10 times higher than conventional membranes. Furthermore, the desired fouling resistance underpins superior operational stability (108 h) and high salinity (7.5 wt%) tolerance, offering great potential in practical applications.

Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1038/s41893-022-00870-3

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