Highly Water-Soluble Magnetic Nanoparticles as Novel Draw Solutes in Forward Osmosis for Water Reuse

Ming Ming Ling, Kai Yu Wang, Tai-Shung Chung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

276 Scopus citations


Highly hydrophilic magnetic nanoparticles have been molecularly designed. For the first time, the application of highly water-soluble magnetic nanoparticles as novel draw solutes in forward osmosis (FO) was systematically investigated. Magnetic nanoparticles functionalized by various groups were synthesized to explore the correlation between the surface chemistry of magnetic nanoparticles and the achieved osmolality. We verified that magnetic nanoparticles capped with polyacrylic acid can yield the highest driving force and subsequently highest water flux among others. The used magnetic nanoparticles can be captured by the magnetic field and recycled back into the stream as draw solutes in the FO process. In addition, magnetic nanoparticles of different diameters were also synthesized to study the effect of particles size on FO performance. We demonstrate that the engineering of surface hydrophilicity and magnetic nanoparticle size is crucial in the application of nanoparticles as draw solutes in FO. It is believed that magnetic nanoparticles will soon be extensively used in this area. © 2010 American Chemical Society.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5869-5876
Number of pages8
JournalIndustrial & Engineering Chemistry Research
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 16 2010
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

KAUST Repository Item: Exported on 2020-10-01
Acknowledgements: The authors would like to thank the Environmental & Water Industry Development Council (MEWR 651-06-158 and R-279-000-271-272), the National University of Singapore (NUS) (R-279-000-249-646), the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), and Saudi Arabia (R-279-000-265-597). The authors also acknowledge Hydration Technologies Inc. for providing the membranes. Special thanks are due to Prof. T. Alan Hatton of the Massachusetts (Cambridge, MA), Dr. Qian Yang, Dr. May May Teoh, Ms. Honglei Wang, Mr. Panu Sukitpaneenit, and Mr. Zhengzhong Zhou for their valuable suggestions.
This publication acknowledges KAUST support, but has no KAUST affiliated authors.


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