Nanofiltration membranes and processes: A review of research trends over the past decade

Darren L. Oatley-Radcliffe, Matthew Walters, Thomas J. Ainscough, Paul M. Williams, Abdul Wahab Mohammad, Nidal Hilal

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Nanofiltration technology has come a long way since first inception in the late 1980s. Research activity in this area covers a great many topics and the aim of this review is to quantify the level interest in each of these areas. The number of annual publications directly related to nanofiltration technology has been harvested from ScienceDirect since 2007. This quantification of research has shown that interest in nanofiltration technology has grown over the past decade, particularly over the past five years. The primary journals reporting articles on nanofiltration are the Journal of Membrane Science, Desalination and Separation and Purification Technology, although articles have been spread across a further 139 journals. Unsurprisingly, the major topics of interest have been water processing, membrane fabrication and membrane surface modification. There has been clear growth in the areas of organic solvent nanofiltration, pharmaceutical and biological applications, design and economics of nanofiltration processes and review articles. Nanofiltration modelling has received less support over the period reviewed and has experienced a steady decline. Clearly the overall growing trend in nanofiltration research indicates that the technology remains popular and this interest should materialise into further applications for a robust and sustainable future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)164-171
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Water Process Engineering
StatePublished - Oct 2017


  • Membranes
  • Nanofiltration
  • Research trends
  • Review
  • Statistics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Process Chemistry and Technology


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