Chemistry ETDs

Publication Date

Summer 7-2-2018


MOF-based mixed matrix membranes (MMMs) are a promising new class of MOF/polymer composite materials. Currently, fabrication of MMMs is based on top-down methods with limited control over MOF positioning, integration, or morphology. This work focuses on the growth of well-defined one-dimensional (1-D) MOF nanostructures within the pores of a nanoporous polymer template, either commercially available or through the self-assembly of block co-polymers having tailor-designed surface functionalities. Studies were conducted using zeolitic imidazole framework-8 (ZIF-8) and polycarbonate track etched (PCTE) membranes, which demonstrated the feasibility of the outlined approach, and revealed the formation of distinct super- and nanostructures with controlled morphologies and orientations through variations in reactant concentrations and pore dimensions. A combination of electron microscopy and X-Ray techniques were used to fully characterize the new templated MMMs and identify the key factors that contribute to crystal growth and help determine the underlying mechanism for growth. Additionally, new polymeric materials were targeted and synthesized which will ultimately lead to the fabrication of designer block co-polymer asymmetric membranes for the in-situ growth of MOF.




MOF, MMM, ZIF-8, MOF Nanostructures, Composite Membranes, Interfacial Synthesis

Document Type


Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name

Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology

First Committee Member (Chair)

Dr. Yang Qin

Second Committee Member

Dr. Martin Kirk

Third Committee Member

Dr. Jeffrey Rack