Effects of Membrane Structure on Oil–Water Separation by Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics

Jie Liu, Xiaoping Xie, Qingbang Meng, Shuyu Sun*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Membrane has been considered an effective tool for oil–water separation. By using the smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) method, the effects of membrane structure on fluid separation were studied thoroughly in this paper. The oil–water two-phase fluid was generated as particles, while the membrane was built with solid particles, which was able to select the fluid particles. In general, the developed SPH method in this paper can evaluate separation performance with different membrane shapes, pore size distributions, membrane thickness and fluid properties. We suggest to the industry a potential approach to promote separation based on our simulation results, including adding the external force in the selected direction and demulsification for the bulk phase liquid particles. The triangular membrane performs well with the conditions for various parameters, as a result of its insensitivity to inhibiting factors. The effectiveness and robustness of the proposed SPH scheme was validated by a number of numerical experiments, and we assessed the optimized membrane structure and operation manners in order to improve separation efficiency and long-term safety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number387
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • membrane
  • oil–water separation
  • smoothed particle hydrodynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Filtration and Separation


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