Dehumidification using High-Performance PAN-based Composite Hollow Fiber Membrane

Technology Overview

This invention relates to a polyacrylonitrile (PAN)-based membrane suitable for dehumidification and oxygen enrichment, with a proprietary PDMS selective layer. The substrate material is PAN, which is a low cost and commonly available polymer for membrane fabrication. The membrane is made by coating the substrate with the selective layer. The membrane may also be suitable for gas separation, air separation, paraffin-olefin separation, oxygen enrichment, CO2 capture, hydrocarbon recovery, and volatile organic compounds separation.

Technology Features & Specifications

  • Composite hollow fiber membrane contactor
  • PAN based substrate with PDMS active layer 
  • Hollow fiber membrane spun at high takeup speed of >15 m/min
  • Membrane tested for 48 hour outdoor dehumidification with 65% water vapor removal from humid air
  • O2 permeance >1000 GPU & COpermance of 5000 GPU
  • Selectivity of O2/N2 ~2 & CO2/N2 =11

Potential Applications

  • Dehumidification
  • Oxygen enrichment from air for medical, enhanced combustion and water treatment applications
  • CO2 capture from flue gas

Market Trends and Opportunities

The global dehumidifier market size was valued at USD 2.13 billion in 2014. Dehumidifiers are used to remove excess moisture and improve air quality to create a better living environment. Increasing popularity across restaurants for maintaining food quality by keeping the inventory moisture-free is also anticipated to contribute to demand.

The global oxygen enriched membrane market comprises of medical applications, enhanced combustion, water treatment and others. The medical segment accounted for 45.83% share of the global market in 2015. This market is primarily witnessing growth owing to the increase in number of elderly and sick people which require oxygen-enriched air to facilitate smooth breathing. The global oxygen enriched membrane market is expected to reach US$ 1,300M by 2025, expanding at a CAGR of 8.4% from 2017 to 2025.

Customer Benefits

  • Low cost polymer material
  • Simple post-treatment procedures
  • Hollow fiber configuration with large membrane surface area and small footprint 

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