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Soft Matter and Biological Physics

Eur. Phys. J. E 5, 29-39

Ultrathin self-assembled polyelectrolyte multilayer membranes

B. Tieke, F. van Ackern, L. Krasemann and A. Toutianoush

Institut für Physikalische Chemie, Universität zu Köln, Luxemburgerstr. 116, 50939 Köln, Germany


(Received 4 September 2000 )

The paper is concerned with ultrathin membranes prepared upon alternating layer-by-layer adsorption of cationic and anionic polyelectrolytes on a porous substructure. The formation of the polyelectrolyte multilayer membranes is characterised and the transport of gases, liquid mixtures and ions across the membranes is studied. In particular, the use of the membranes for alcohol/water separation under pervaporation conditions, and for the separation of mono- and divalent ions is described. It is demonstrated that upon a suitable choice of polyelectrolytes and substructures, and a careful optimisation of preparation and operation conditions, membranes can be tailored exhibiting an excellent separation capability.

68.47.Pe - Langmuir-Blodgett films on solids, polymers on surfaces, biological molecules on surfaces.
81.15.Lm - Liquid phase epitaxy; deposition from liquid phases (melts, solutions, and surface layers on liquids).
82.65.Fr - Film and membrane processes: ion exchange, dialysis, osmosis, electroosmosis.

© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica, Springer-Verlag 2001