Fouling Is the Beginning: Upcycling Biopolymer-Fouled Substrates for Fabricating High-Permeance Thin-Film Composite Polyamide Membranes

Commercial polymeric membranes are generally recognized to have low sustainability as membranes need to be replaced and abandoned after reaching the end of their life. At present, only techniques for downcycling end-of-life high-pressure membranes are available. For the first time, this study paves the way for upcycling fouled/end-of-life low-pressure membranes to fabricate new high-pressure membranes for water purification, forming a closed eco-loop of membrane recycling with significantly improved sustainability.