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Investigating fouling at the pore-scale using a microfluidic membrane mimic filtration system

Debnath, Nandini and Kumar, Aloke and Thundat, Thomas and Sadrzadeh, Mohtada (2019) Investigating fouling at the pore-scale using a microfluidic membrane mimic filtration system. In: SCIENTIFIC REPORTS, 9 .

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Official URL: https://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-47096-6


The work investigates fouling in a microfluidic membrane mimic (MMM) filtration system for foulants such as polystyrene particles and large polymeric molecules. Our MMM device consists of a staggered arrangement of pillars which enables real-time visualization and analysis of pore-scale phenomena. Different fouling scenarios are investigated by conducting constant-pressure experiments. Fouling experiments are performed with three different types of foulants: polystyrene particle solution (colloidal fouling), polyacrylamide polymer solution (organic fouling) and a mixture of these two solutions (combined fouling). Four major categories of microscopic fouling are observed: cake filtration (upstream), pore blocking (inside the pores), colloidal aggregation (downstream) and colloidal streamer fouling (downstream). Our microfluidic experiments show that downstream colloidal aggregation and streamer fouling have a significant effect on overall membrane fouling which were not studied before.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: copyright for this article belongs to NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
Department/Centre: Division of Mechanical Sciences > Mechanical Engineering
Date Deposited: 22 Aug 2019 09:45
Last Modified: 22 Aug 2019 09:45
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/63414

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