Composite Polymer Membranes Containing Mesoporous Metal Oxide Additives


Executive Summary


The world is facing a shortage of clean and safe water, and membrane filtration is a widely used industrial application to transform non-potable into potable water.  MSU researchers have developed novel high flux, compaction-resistant and durable polymer composite membranes for sustainable, cost-effective drinking water purification and water reuse. The achieved enhancements in membrane properties can substantially improve the energy and separation efficiency of currently available commercial water purification processes.


Description of Technology


The unique combination of properties of the novel membranes is made possible through the incorporation of mesoporous metal oxide particles in the polymer membrane.  These particles act as reinforcing additives, pore structure modifiers, and surface polarity modifiers. The novel membranes exhibit superior resistance to internal damage and core compaction. They show increased permeability without sacrificing separation selectivity and offer resistance to chemical degradation and mechanical wear with little or no shedding of particles under pressure.


Key Benefits

  • Substantial improvement of energy and separation efficiency of commercial water purification processes
  • Extended longevity and high flux separation without sacrificing selectivity



  • Ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, and reverse osmosis membranes in global water management and sewage treatment technology market


Patent Status: 


Patent application published, publication number 20130284667


Licensing Rights Available


Full licensing rights available.


Inventors: Thomas J. Pinnavaia, Volodymyr V. Tarabara


Tech ID: TEC2012-0064


Patent Information:


For Information, Contact:

Bradley Shaw
Technology Manager
Michigan State University