My PhD project is about application of a novel type of membrane, called Slippery Liquid-Infused Membranes (SLIMs), for oil/water emulsion separation. SLIM is inspired by a new type of non-wetting surfaces, so called Slippery Liquid-Infused Porous Surfaces (SLIPS), in which an intermediary liquid is responsible for non-wetting properties. The intermediary liquid is stabilized by capillary forces and it should be immiscible with another liquid that one wants to repel. The presence of this liquid in the membrane pores (liquid-lined pores) prevent direct contact between the permeating fluid and the solid material of the membrane. Thus, it can potentially decrease fouling in filtration applications. Since, the filled pores can be opened and closed in response to pressure, the pores are called liquid-gated pores.
To better understand the governing mechanisms such as, gating mechanism, and liquid-liquid displacement, I'm conducting and designing both membrane and microfluidic experiments. These kinds of fundamental studies are required to better investigate the applicability of SLIM in filtration processes.
Microfluidic devices and chips
immiscible displacement in porous media
Enhanced oil recovery