Multilayered Thin Film Composite Membranes
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A thin film composite (TFC) membrane is a bilayer of multilayer membrane constituted by an asymmetric porous structure and a thin and dense-selective film. The asymmetric structure gives mechanical stability to the membrane, without restricting flux. It is normally obtained by phase inversion and frequently based on polysulfone. In the most known TFC membranes, the thin layer is based on polyamide and is prepared by interfacial polymerization (Nunes and Peinemann 2006). Having a typical thickness lower than a micrometer, the dense layer gives the needed selectivity for salt (reverse osmosis) or other small solutes, without adding a high barrier for water transport. Interfacial polymerization as a simple and effective method for TFC membranes started to be explored by Cadotte et al. (1980) in the 1960s. Initially polyethylenimine and diisocyanate were used as monomers, resulting in what was known as NS-100 membrane. The most used system for thin film preparation is currently a...