Preparation and characterization of f-MWCNT-GO self-assembled polymeric nanocomposite membrane for wastewater treatment
Increased population and urbanization have resulted in the generation of significant amounts of wastewater. The integration of membrane technology with nanotechnology has prompted revolutionary advances in the treatment of wastewaters. In this study, functionalized multi-walled carbon nanotubes (f-MWCNT)- (GO) nanocomposite was prepared by self-assembly, then incorporated into polylactic acid (PLA) membranes. Different concentrations of f-MWCNT-GO ranging from 0% to 8 wt.% were used. Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) was performed to confirm the existence of f-MWCNT-GO in the fabricated membranes. In addition, the effect of f-MWCNT-GO incorporation on the performance of the membranes were investigated by carrying out analyses that include, but are not limited to, deionized (DI) water contact angle (CA), porosity, water flux, heavy metals removal, etc. The addition of f-MWCNT-GO resulted in a decrease in the DI water CA from 79.0±3.8° in the pristine PLA membrane to 51.8±2.4° in the 8 wt.% f-MWCNT-GO-PLA membrane. Furthermore, the water flux increased from 1062.8 L/m2·h to 2543.4 L/m2·h in the pristine PLA and 8 wt.% f-MWCNT-GO-PLA membrane, respectively. Such membranes have the potential to be utilized in real wastewater treatment applications.