Fabrication and structural tailoring of reverse osmosis membranes using β-cyclodextrin-cored star polymers

Sungkwon Jeon, Chan Hyung Park, Seung Su Shin, Jung Hyun Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


Here, we designed a new chemistry of fouling-resistant reverse osmosis (RO) membranes using a star polymer (CD-PAH) comprising multiple linear polymer (poly(acryloyl hydrazide), PAH) arms grafted onto a β-cyclodextrin (β-CD) core. The well-defined structure of the β-CD-cored star polymer enabled us to systematically synthesize CD-PAHs with different arm lengths, which were assembled into membrane selective layers via a layered interfacial polymerization technique. Increasing the PAH arm length of CD-PAH enhanced the inter-chain entanglement of PAH arms and thus the crosslinking reaction efficiency by providing a higher density of the crosslinkable amine groups of densely-packed PAH arms. Hence, longer PAH arms of CD-PAH resulted in an enhancement in NaCl rejection with a reduction in the water permeance of the CD-PAH-assembled (CD-TFC) membrane. Importantly, the CD-TFC membranes prepared using CD-PAHs with longer PAH arms exhibited RO separation performance comparable to that of a commercial RO membrane, which is not feasible by other reported branch-structured macromolecules. Furthermore, the CD-TFC membrane displayed lower organic fouling with a higher rinsing efficiency than a commercial RO membrane, because of its more negatively charged and hydrophilic surface combined with its smoother surface, overcoming a performance-fouling trade-off.

Original languageEnglish
Article number118415
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Oct 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean government ( 2019R1A2C1002333 , 2019M3E6A1064103 and 2018R1A4A1022194 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier B.V.


  • Antifouling
  • Reverse osmosis
  • Star polymer
  • Thin film composite membranes
  • β-cyclodextrin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation


Dive into the research topics of 'Fabrication and structural tailoring of reverse osmosis membranes using β-cyclodextrin-cored star polymers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this