Available Technology

Filtering apparatus and method of use

A filtering apparatus comprises a microporous membrane and an actuator. The membrane is positioned to traverse across the hollow interior of a conduit used for the transport of molecules in bulk. In one example, the pores of the membrane comprise a plurality of open-ended carbon nanotubes. The actuator comprises a transducing material such as a polyvinyledene fluoride film that is operatively positioned in contact with the membrane and is capable of propagating acoustic vibration onto the membrane at a particular frequency so as to hasten the movement of the molecules through the membrane. Similarly, a method of filtering water comprises the steps of: (a) sifting molecules of water through the membrane, the pores of the membrane comprising a plurality of carbon nanotubes; and (b) propagating acoustic vibration onto the microporous membrane at a libration frequency of ice so as to hasten movement of the water molecules within the carbon nanotubes.
Inventors: 

Lillian Susan Gavalas

Patent Number: 
US7935259
Patent Issue Date: 
June 3, 2011
Agency
NASA
State: 
Texas
Lab Representatives
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