IISER Bhopal Researchers develop COF membranes for the separation of toxic molecules from water

IISER Bhopal Researchers develop COF membranes for the separation of toxic molecules from water

The films were nanoporous, i.e., the pores in the films were a hundred thousand times smaller than the width of a single human hair

Staff ReporterUpdated: Friday, April 14, 2023, 12:53 PM IST
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Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): Scientists in the city have developed a membrane capable of filtering out micro-pollutants from water. The membrane, which does not allow toxic molecules of sizes more than one hundred thousandth times of the width of a single human hair, to pass through, has multiple industrial and environmental uses.

Researchers of the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Bhopal led by Abhijit Patra have made an important advancement in the field of porous membranes for molecular separation.

They have demonstrated the transformation of an organic imines cage molecule into a free-standing covalent organic frameworks (COF) film. The films were tested for selective separation of toxic organic micro-pollutants through nano-filtration technique and was shown to be effective. COF materials are lightweight, thermally highly stable and permanently porous, making them an excellent choice for membrane-based separation applications.

The results of the study hold promise for the development of more efficient and selective separation technologies for a variety of industrial and environmental applications. The researchers are confident that this breakthrough will pave the way for the development of advanced COF-based membranes with higher selectivity and efficiency.

‘Our findings open up a new route for structural inter-conversion between two crystalline entities with diverse dimensionality, employing dynamic covalent chemistry (DCC) at the confined interface under ambient conditions,’ Patra said.

The researchers are hopeful that their work will inspire further exploration in the field of dynamic covalent chemistry and COFs to address pressing needs of sustainable development.

The details of the study have been published in the prestigious journal, Angewandte Chemie, in a paper co-authored by Abhijit Patra, Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry, IISER Bhopal and his research scholars Arkaprabha Giri, G Shreeraj, and Tapas Kumar Dutta.

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