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Oil loving membranes for oil spill clean-ups

by Holly Sheahan, RSC last modified 11-14-12 07:52 AM Copyright 2012, RSC
Oil loving membranes for oil spill clean-ups

Oil and water separation using the membrane. The water and oil were dyed by methyl blue and oil red, respectively

Researchers in China have made a new type of membrane that can separate oil from water and could potentially be used in oil spills, such as the one in the Gulf of Mexico. The membrane works by interacting differently with the substances as it is both superhydrophobic and superoleophilic, so that it repels water but attracts oil. This means that the oil is absorbed through the membrane, but the water can’t penetrate. More...

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