Theoretical Studies of Photofacilitated Transport in Liquid Membranes Under Double Illumination

Publication Year



Membrane, photofacilitated, illumination, chemistry


Chemistry | Physical Sciences and Mathematics


Membrane separation processes have been used in a variety of situations, including water filtration and purification, gas separation, and metal ion separation. A membrane can simply be defined as a barrier separating two phases. The feed phase is the side in which the concentration of solute is high, and the sweep phase is the phase where the concentration of solute is low. Carrier molecules are used within the membrane to bind reversibly and selectively to the solute of interest to improve the separation across the membrane. Better separation of the constituents is obtained when the flux or solute transport rate across the membrane is high.

In these studies, the carrier properties are modulated through light, resulting in a photofacilitated membrane. In photofacilitated membranes, the carrier can exist in two forms, the strong form or the weak form. Light can be used to drive the conversion of one form to the other with a subsequent thermal conversion to the original form. The feed side can be illuminated to convert most of the weak form to the strong form and enhance uptake of the solute or the sweep side can be illuminated to convert the strong form to the weak form and promote release of the solute. This study deals with simulating membrane performance under double illumination, light on both the feed and the sweep, and comparing it with the membrane performance under single illumination, light on only one side of the membrane. Results suggest that in almost all cases double illumination provides faster transport than single illumination or transport in the dark.

Department 1 Awarding Honors Status


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