This study proposes a method to prepare a crack-free poly(vinylidene fluoride) (PVDF) microfiltration (MF) membrane with enhanced antifouling property. In the study, blending 4% poly(vinylidene fluoride)-graft-poly(sulfopropyl methacrylate) (PVDF-g-PSPMA) and 1.5% potassium perchlorate (KClO4) led to crack prevention during membrane preparation via nonsolvent induced phase separation (NIPS) when compared with blending with 4% PVDF-g-PSPMA only (without KClO4). The resulting crack-free membrane (A3) had both smooth surface structure and hydrophilicity in comparison with pristine PVDF membrane (A1). In addition, blending with PVDF-g-PSPMA and KClO4 also allowed the A3 membrane to exhibit uniform pore size distribution (PSD) and smooth surface structure, compared with PVDF membrane commercially available from company "M" in Germany. The aforementioned properties led to antifouling characteristics in the crack-free membrane (A3). According to flux performances, flux recovery and cumulative permeate volume (between 120 and 240 min) of crack-free membrane (A3) were 11.41 and 17.41% superior to those of commercial membrane, respectively.
Keywords: antifouling property; crack prevention; flux recovery; pore size distribution (PSD); potassium perchlorate (KClO4).