Mapping TpPa-1 covalent organic framework (COF) molecular interactions in mixed solvents via atomistic modeling and experimental study

Anastasia M. Barnes, Mohammad M. Afroz, Yun Kyung Shin, Adri C.T. van Duin, Katie D. Li-Oakey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Complex solvent environments continue to limit the widespread adoption of organic solvent nanofiltration (OSN) in many chemical industry applications. In this paper we employ a commercially available covalent organic framework (COF), TpPa-1, and force field models to molecularly map separation performance of TpPa-1 membrane in mixed solvents. To minimize time and length scale mismatch between atomistic modeling and experiments, solvent permeance was normalized with water in modeling and experimental results to enable direct comparison. Model outputs, such as organic solvent permeance and solute rejection rate, matched well with filtration results. Since the atomistic models assume that all mass transfer is via through-pore transport, the discrepancies between modeling and experimental results provide insights on the effect of linear polymer defects, adsorption and interstitial mass transfer on polycrystalline COF membrane performance. In sum, force field models can serve as digital twins of COF membranes to simulate separation processes while capturing the effects of COF structure, chemistry, and crystallinity on membrane performance in complex organic solvent environments. This approach will provide insight into future COF design and synthesis for persisting separation challenges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number122613
JournalJournal of Membrane Science
StatePublished - Apr 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Filtration and Separation

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