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Frontiers of Chemical Science and Engineering >> 2022, Volume 16, Issue 5 doi: 10.1007/s11705-021-2103-5

Nanofiltration for drinking water treatment: a review

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Abstract

In recent decades, nanofiltration (NF) is considered as a promising separation technique to produce drinking water from different types of water source. In this paper, we comprehensively reviewed the progress of NF-based drinking water treatment, through summarizing the development of materials/fabrication and applications of NF membranes in various scenarios including surface water treatment, groundwater treatment, water reuse, brackish water treatment, and point of use applications. We not only summarized the removal of target major pollutants (e.g., hardness, pathogen, and natural organic matter), but also paid attention to the removal of micropollutants of major concern (e.g., disinfection byproducts, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, and arsenic). We highlighted that, for different applications, fit-for-purpose design is needed to improve the separation capability for target compounds of NF membranes in addition to their removal of salts. Outlook and perspectives on membrane fouling control, chlorine resistance, integrity, and selectivity are also discussed to provide potential insights for future development of high-efficiency NF membranes for stable and reliable drinking water treatment.

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