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Impact of three-dimensional tortuous pore structure on polyethersulfone membrane morphology and mass transfer properties from a manufacturing perspective

  • Makoto FukudaEmail author
  • Hitoshi Saomoto
  • Tomohiro Mori
  • Hiroki Yoshimoto
  • Rei Kusumi
  • Kiyotaka Sakai
Original Article Artificial Kidney / Dialysis
  • 31 Downloads

Abstract

We examined typical commercial poly(ethersulfone) (PESf) hemodialysis and hemoconcentration membranes successfully used in manufacturing, and employed scanning probe microscope (SPM) to achieve a structural observation of the pores in the inner membrane surfaces, as well as measure the pore diameters and their distribution, verifying the relationship between the typical mass transfer properties. We focused on the differences between the PESf membranes which were expected to further improve the advanced pore structure control and functional design for various medical uses. The three-dimensional tortuous capillary pores on the inner surface of hollow fiber hemodialysis and hemoconcentrator membranes were investigated using dynamic force microscopy (DFM), and the pore diameter and distribution were measured through a line analysis. Compared with PUREMA-A, PES-Sα hemodialysis membranes have smaller three-dimensional tortuous capillary pore diameters and pore areas, as well as a smaller pore diameter distribution and pore area distribution, which make the accurate measurements of the pore diameter using FE-SEM impossible. These PESf membranes are almost the same in pure water permeability, but greatly differ in pore diameter and pore diameter distribution. By comparing and verifying as above, we may gain insight into the flexibility, versatility, and superior structural and functional controllability of PESf membrane pore structures, which could advance the development of pore structure control. Pending issues include the fact that, using a line analysis software of SPM devices, it is very difficult to measure hundred pores which clearly reflects the poor quality of pore size distributions obtained in this study, measurement accuracy must be improved further.

Keywords

Polyethersulfone Hollow fiber membrane Three-dimensional tortuous pore Scanning probe microscope (SPM) Tortuous capillary pore model 

Abbreviations

C

Concentration (mg/mL)

Lp

Pure water permeability (mL/m2 h mmHg)

QB

Volumetric flow rate of blood side (mL/min)

QF

Filtration volumetric flow rate (mL/min)

SC

Sieving coefficient (–)

Subscript

B

Blood side

D

Dialysate side

I

Inlet

O

Outlet

Notes

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society for Artificial Organs 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biomedical EngineeringKindai UniversityKinokawaJapan
  2. 2.Industrial Technology Center of Wakayama PrefectureWakayamaJapan
  3. 3.Professor Emeritus of Chemical EngineeringWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan

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