3D Printered and Plasma Treated Superhydrophobic Mesh Filters for Oil-water Separation

H.J. Lee, W. Jo, S. Lee, M.-W. Moon
Korea Institute of Science and Technology, KR

Keywords: 3D printer, mesh filters, oil-water separation, plasma, superhydrophobicity

Summary:

We develop the 3D printed mesh filters with plasma treatment using a radio-frequency plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (rf-PECVD) to control their surface wettability. The nano-sclae hairy structures on the meshes are created by plasma etching and further coated by hexamethyldisiloxane (HMDSO) to control the surface wettability. The efficiency of the oil/water separation function is evaluated by observing the behaviour of oil/water mixture droplets on the functionalized mesh filters. The HMDSO coated mesh filters exhibited sufficient superhydrophobic and superoleophilic properties resulting in excellent oil separation capability from the oil/water mixture. Furthermore, we demonstrate that filtration of mixtures through the mesh filters is influenced by mesh pore sizes directly. The combination of 3DP technique and plasma treatment by PECVD makes very promising mesh filters for practical applications like oil spill clean-up or oil-water mixture separation.