Nanocellulose and Polycaprolactone Nanospun Composite Membranes and Their Potential for the Removal of Pollutants from Water

Molecules. 2020 Feb 6;25(3):683. doi: 10.3390/molecules25030683.


A composite membrane based on polycaprolactone (PCL) and cellulose nanofibers (CNF) with different compositions was prepared using the electro-spinning method, with the objective of developing organic membranes with good mechanical properties to remove contaminants from water. Water is a resource of primary importance for life and human activities. In this sense, cellulose obtained from agave bagasse and polycaprolactone nanofibers was used to prepare membranes that were tested by filtering tap water. The membranes obtained presented a porosity and structure on a nanometric scale. The water quality variables evaluated after filtration with the PCL/CNF membranes showed 100% turbidity removal, 100% conductivity, and heavy metal removal of the order of 75% to 99% for iron and chromium. CNF comprises biowaste derived from tequila production, and it has added value. Electro-spun CNF and PCL membranes can be applied as a "green" and eco-friendly filtration system for water purification.

Keywords: agave bagasse; cellulose nanofibers; electro-spinning; membranes; water filtration.

MeSH terms

  • Agave / chemistry
  • Cellulose / chemistry*
  • Chromium / isolation & purification
  • Iron / isolation & purification
  • Membranes, Artificial
  • Metals, Heavy / isolation & purification*
  • Nanofibers / chemistry
  • Polyesters / chemistry*
  • Porosity
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical / isolation & purification*
  • Water Purification / instrumentation


  • Membranes, Artificial
  • Metals, Heavy
  • Polyesters
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical
  • Chromium
  • polycaprolactone
  • Cellulose
  • bagasse
  • Iron