The transport phenomena of transition metal cations through supported activated composite membrane (ACM) containing di-(2-ethylhexyl)dithiophosphoric acid (DTPA) as a carrier have been studied. The polyamide top layer of the ACM immobilizes DTPA by trapping it in the polymer net during the interfacial polymerization process. The comparison of ACM with the corresponding supported liquid membrane (SLM) shows far higher stability of the former. Thus, the results of a comparative study of SLM and ACM under identical conditions show that no metal ions transport through SLM is observed after 1 day working experiment, while ACM demonstrate sufficiently stable transport properties within several weeks of their use. A membrane-based process for zinc recovery from hydrometallurgical effluents has been developed. Zinc selectively diffuses from the feed solution through the ACM into the receiver solution containing 2.2 M hydrochloric acid, due to the facilitated transport with DTPA acting as carrier in the membrane. The selectivity of DTPA based ACM towards different metal ions is presented and discussed. At pH 2 in the feed phase, the membrane provides a selective transport of zinc ionic species to the stripping compartment of the membrane cell, while other metal ions (Al, Ca, Mg, Mn and Ni) with sufficiently high stability of the DTPA-complexes remain in the feed compartment. Such a selectivity is based on the differences of the dynamic behaviour of the metal ions transport. © Elsevier Science Ltd.
- Activated composite membranes
- Facilitated transport
- Selective metal ion transport