Before going into the details of what interfacial polymerization is, let's clarify what polymerization is. It is a chemical process that creates chain-like bonds containing monomers.
- You can find more details about polymerization in this short article: what is polymerization?
It consists in the formation of a thin layer of polyamide at the interface, which is the zone separating the polymer from its surface where it is placed. When two reactive monomers react at the organic/aqueous interface, a thin layer of polyamide is formed. Since the reagents used are self-inhibiting in nature and the input is controlled, the polyamide layers are typically 100 to 300 nm thick.
By changing the monomers used for interfacial polymerization, the thickness and morphology of the polyamide formed can be adjusted to suit the application.
When is interfacial polymerization used?
This process is mainly used in the water treatment sector, hence the reason for this article on our site! IP is used in the manufacture of the most popular reverse osmosis or nanofiltration membranes on the market.
Specifically, during the manufacturing of thin-film composite membranes or thin-film nanocomposite membranes, interfacial polymerization is used to create the semipermeable polyamide layer on the membrane.
To sum up, we hope that these explanations have enlightened you about this technique used for the production of water treatment membranes. Do not hesitate to write to us if you have any questions.
In the meantime, here are a few articles that might interest you.