An investigation on the effects of nanoplastic particles on nanoporous graphene membrane desalination

W Toh and EYM Ang and TY Ng and RM Lin and ZS Liu, DESALINATION, 496, 114765 (2020).

DOI: 10.1016/j.desal.2020.114765

In this paper, we investigate the potential issues low dimensional carbon material desalination membranes may encounter when nanoplastics are present in the systems. This study is performed via molecular dynamics simulations on desalination systems which comprise the nanoporous graphene membrane. It was found that there is high affinity between nanoplastics and graphene, indicating high tendency of the nanoplastic particles to foul the membranes. Furthermore, it was observed that the presence of nanoplastic molecules reduce the salt rejection rate of the membranes. Through this work, we hope to highlight the potential issues caused by the increasing prevalence of nanoplastics in the environment on carbon based desalination membranes, so as to aid the future design of these high performance membranes.

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