Membrane filtration has been demonstrated to be effective for the removal of liquid-borne nanoparticles (NPs). Such technique can be applied to purify and disinfect drinking water as well as remove NPs in highly pure chemicals used in the industries. This study aims to study the filtration process of a model membrane filter, the Nuclepore filter. Experiments were carried out using standard filtration tools and the nanoparticle tracking analysis (NTA) technique was used to measure particle (50-500 nm) concentration upstream and downstream of the filter to determine the filtration efficiency. The NTA technique has been calibrated using 150-nm polystyrene latex particles to determine its accuracy of particle concentration measurement. Measurements were found reliable within a certain concentration limit (about 108-1010 particles/cm3), which is dependent on the camera settings during the measurement. Experimental results are comparable with previously published data obtained using the aerosolization method, validating the capability of the NTA technique. The capillary tube model modified from that developed for aerosol filtration was found to be useful to represent the experimental results, when a sticking coefficient of 0.15 is incorporated. This suggests that only 15% of the particle collisions with the filter results in successful attachment. The small sticking coefficient found can be explained by the unfavorable surface interactions between the particles and the filter medium.
- Clean water
- Modeling and simulation
- Nanoparticle tracking analysis