UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Transparent PAN:TiO2 and PAN-co-PMA:TiO2 Nanofiber Composite Membranes with High Efficiency in Particulate Matter Pollutants Filtration Ruan, Dongliang; Qin, Liming; Chen, Rouxi; Xu, Guojie; Su, Zhibo; Cheng, Jianhua; Xie, Shilei; Cheng, Faliang; Ko, Frank


Particulate matter is one of the main pollutants, causing hazy days, and it has been serious concern for public health worldwide, particularly in China recently. Quality of outdoor atmosphere with a pollutant emission of PM2.5 is hard to be controlled; but the quality of indoor air could be achieved by using fibrous membrane-based air-filtering devices. Herein, we introduce nanofiber membranes for both indoor and outdoor air protection by electrospun synthesized polyacrylonitrile:TiO₂ and developed polyacrylonitrile-co-polyacrylate:TiO₂ composite nanofiber membranes. In this study, we design both polyacrylonitrile:TiO₂ and polyacrylonitrile-co-polyacrylate:TiO₂ nanofiber membranes with controlling the nanofiber diameter and membrane thickness and enable strong particulate matter adhesion to increase the absorptive performance and by synthesizing the specific microstructure of different layers of nanofiber membranes. Our study shows that the developed polyacrylonitrile-co-polyacrylate:TiO₂ nanofiber membrane achieves highly effective (99.95% removal of PM2.5) under extreme hazy air-quality conditions (PM2.5 mass concentration 1 mg/m³). Moreover, the experimental simulation of the test in 1 cm³ air storehouse shows that the polyacrylonitrile-co-polyacrylate:TiO₂ nanofiber membrane (1 g/m²) has the excellent PM 2.5 removal efficiency of 99.99% in 30 min.

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