Reduction of nanofiltration membrane fouling by UV-initiated graft polymerization technique

M. N. Abu Seman, M. Khayet, Z. I. Bin Ali, N. Hilal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nanofiltration polyethersulfone membrane has been modified by means of UV-initiated graft polymerization technique using the weakly acidic monomer acrylic acid and the immersion method. Different UV-irradiation times and acrylic acid concentrations in water were studied. Both the unmodified and the modified polyethersulfone nanofiltration membranes were characterized by attenuated total reflection-Fourier transform infrared spectra (FTIR-ATR) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Irreversible membrane fouling has been studied by using humic acid model solutions at two different pH values (7 and 3). It was observed that some modified membranes exhibited higher permeance than the unmodified polyethersulfone nanofiltration membrane. The humic acid rejection factor was higher for all modified membranes compared to the unmodified membrane and the irreversible fouling by humic acid molecules was reduced after UV-initiated graft polymerization by acrylic acid.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)133-141
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jun 15 2010


  • Acrylic acid
  • Humic acid
  • Irradiation
  • Membrane modification
  • Nanofiltration
  • UV

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation


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