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Carbohydr Polym. 2013 Feb 15;92(2):1887-95. doi: 10.1016/j.carbpol.2012.11.080. Epub 2012 Dec 3.

Fabrication of dual-responsive cellulose-based membrane via simplified surface-initiated ATRP.

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Department of Environmental Sciences & Engineering, College of Resources & Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193, PR China.


An independently temperature- and pH-responsive membrane was developed by simultaneously grafting poly(N-isopropylacryamide) (PNIPAAm) and poly[(2-(diethylamino)ethyl methacrylate] (PDEAEMA) from different sides of a crosslinked cellulose membrane. The synthesis was simplified by using surface-initiated activators regenerated by electron transfer for atom-transfer radical polymerization in a diffusion device. The grafted membrane was heterostructured. The grafted polymer layer thickness was linearly related to reaction time. The wettabilities of the double-membrane sides responded individually and reversibly to temperature and pH. The surface grafted with PNIPAAm shifted from hydrophilicity to hydrophobicity above the lower critical solution temperature. The PDEAEMA side was hydrophilic in acidic aqueous solution and hydrophobic under basic conditions. This dual-response cellulose membrane has potential applications in water treatment, separations, and other membrane applications.

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