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Integrated MEUF, MENF and MERO for phenol remediation: a process intensified technology

Pallabi Das, Ranjit Rangari, and Bhim Kumar

CSIR-Central Institute of Mining and Fuel Research, Dhanbad, India



Received: 18 October 2022  Accepted: 1 October 2023


The study focuses on micellar-enhanced pressure-driven membrane separation (RO, NF, UF), for phenol removal. The rationale was to develop, a simple and efficient technique for complete remediation of phenol. For this, experiments toward integration of the pressure-driven membrane processes and comparative performance analysis were undertaken. Effect of micellar aggregation, nature of surfactant, phenol loading, and process parameters on processes like nanofiltration and reverse osmosis were studied. Cost–benefit analysis was also carried out to assess the techno-commercial viability of the process. Comparative phenol removal efficiency obtained follows the order MENF > MEUF > MERO. Combined MEUF and MENF demonstrated sustained high removal efficiencies of up to 95% and above. Subsequently surfactant regeneration and its reuse were investigated. Competitive phenol removal efficiencies in the range of 80–87% were attained using regenerated surfactant when tested up to 4 operational cycles. Several useful insights about surfactant-mediated pressure-driven transport and techno-economic analysis were gained through this study.

Graphical abstract

Keywords: Micellar-enhanced ultrafiltration; Micellar nanofiltration; Micellar reverse osmosis; Sustainable; Phenol removal; Surfactant regeneration

Full paper is available at

DOI: 10.1007/s11696-023-03127-1


Chemical Papers 78 (2) 861–874 (2024)

Tuesday, June 25, 2024

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