Response surface methodology for the modeling and optimization of oil-in-water emulsion separation using gas sparging assisted microfiltration

Environ Sci Pollut Res Int. 2015 Feb;22(3):2311-27. doi: 10.1007/s11356-014-3511-6. Epub 2014 Sep 4.


Response surface methodology (RSM) and central composite design (CCD) were used to develop models for optimization and modeling of a gas sparging assisted microfiltration of oil-in-water (o/w) emulsion. The effect of gas flow rate (Q G ), oil concentration (C oil ), transmembrane pressure (TMP), and liquid flow rate (Q L ) on the permeate flux and oil rejection were studied by RSM. Two sets of experiments were designed to investigate the effects of different gas-liquid two-phase flow regimes; low and high gas flow rates. Two separate RSM models were developed for each experimental set. The oil concentration and TMP were found to be the most significant factors influencing both permeate flux and rejection. Also, the interaction between these parameters was the most significant one. At low Q G , the more the gas flow rate, the higher the permeate flux; however, in the high gas flow rate region, higher Q G did not necessarily improve the permeate flux. In the case of rejection, gas and liquid flow rates were found to be insignificant. The optimum process conditions were found to be the following: Q G = 1.0 (L/min), C oil = 1,290 (mg/L), TMP = 1.58 (bar), and Q L = 3.0 (L/min). Under these optimal conditions, maximum permeate flux and rejection (%) were 115.9 (L/m(2)h) and 81.1 %, respectively.

MeSH terms

  • Emulsions
  • Filtration
  • Models, Theoretical*
  • Petroleum Pollution / prevention & control*
  • Statistics as Topic
  • Waste Disposal, Fluid / methods*


  • Emulsions