Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, Vol.578, 195-206, 2020
Polyacrylonitrile/polyimide composite sub-micro fibrous membranes for precise filtration of PM0.26 pollutants
Particulate matter (PM) pollution has enormously threatened ecosystem and public health. Among various air filtration medium, fibrous ones are very attracting and promising, with an array of advantages such as high specific surface area, and good internal connectivity. Even so, the large-scale fabrication of fibrous filtration materials still remains challenging. Here, three-dimensional polyacrylonitrile/polyimide (PAN/PI) composite sub-micro fibrous membranes were fabricated facilely via free surface electrospinning for precise filtration of PM0.26 pollutants, where the waste PI short fibers were utilized as raw material. The resultant composite fibrous membranes, featuring thin fiber diameter (similar to 150 nm), low areal density (<0.8 g m(2)), large porosity, and highly tortuous airflow channels with uniform pore size distribution, possessed excellent mechanical property with tensile strength of 4.95 MPa (twice that of pristine PAN), high thermal durability as well as remarkable filtration performance for ultrafine NaCl aerosol particles (<= 0.26 mu m) even after multiple filtration tests at high airflow velocity of 14.1 cm s(-1). The deepened aperture channels inside three-dimensional sub-micro fibrous membranes are tortuous enough for capturing ultrafine PMs from the airstream mainly via diffusion, interception, and impaction mechanisms, and the reported large-scale fabrication of cost-effective homogeneous PAN/PI fibrous filter media is promising for industrial production and commercial applications. (C) 2020 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.