I-Corps: Multifunctional Ceramic Reactive Electrochemical Membrane Filtration

Project: Research project

Project Details


The broader impact/commercial potential of this I-Corps project is the commercialization of a potentially game-changing filtration technology based on the synergistic electrochemical reactions created on membrane surfaces. Membrane filtration is indispensable for a wide spectrum of industrial applications such as drinking water treatment, food processing, chemical purification, and pharmaceutical engineering. This project will provide filtration users the value propositions in saving capital costs on membrane cleaning, maintenance, replacement as well as high quality products (e.g., filtered water). This project will also impact membrane manufacturers by increasing the demand for multifunctional and reactive membranes in the global market of membrane filtration, which is estimated to reach $2.64 billion by 2018. Therefore, the ultimate goal of this project is to upgrade and traNational Science Foundation orm current membrane industries from traditional physical filtration into advanced and chemically reactive membrane systems. This process will also potentially lead to new business opportunities and foster workforce development.This I-Corps project addresses a long lasting goal of developing more efficient, flexible, durable, and multifunctional membrane technologies. This project investigates a novel reactive electrochemical membrane (REM) powered by electric polarization. During REM filtration, electric current runs through the membrane to generate highly reactive radicals (a chemical that rapidly react with organic compounds and oxidizes them into carbon dioxide and water). Thus, the membrane fouling due to organic matter accumulation or pore clogging can be effectively mitigated. This invention will demonstrate multiple benefits through the applications in algal biomass sEnvironmental Protection Agencyration processes. Specifically, the project will fabricate and test a suite of REMs to evaluate biomass sEnvironmental Protection Agencyration efficiency, permeate water quality, and anti-fouling properties and to elucidate the underlying mechanisms of electrochemical oxidation and impacts on fouling mitigation. The results will provide fundamental guidelines as to the rational design of new-generation reactive membranes.
Effective start/end date11/1/164/30/18


  • National Science Foundation


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