Potential dependent ionic sieving through functionalized laminar MoS2 membranes

Wisit Hirunpinyopas, Eric Prestat, Pawin Iamprasertkun, Mark Alexander Bissett, Robert Angus William Dryfe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Laminar MoS2 membranes show outstanding potential for practical applications in energy conversion/storage, sensing, and as nanofluidic devices. For water purification technologies, MoS2 membranes can form abundant nanocapillaries from layered stacks of exfoliated MoS2 nanosheets. These MoS2 membranes have previously demonstrated excellent ionic rejection with high water permeation rates, as well as long-term stability with no significant swelling when exposed to aqueous or organic solvents. Chemical modification of these MoS2 membranes has been shown to improve their ionic rejection properties, however the mechanism behind this improvement is not well understood. To elucidate this mechanism we report the potential dependant ion transport through functionalized MoS2 membranes. The ionic permeability of the MoS2 membrane was transformed by chemical functionalization with a simple naphthalene sulfonate dye (sunset yellow) and found to decrease by over a factor of ~10 compared to the pristine MoS2 membranes and those reported for graphene oxide and Ti3C2Tx (MXene) membranes. The effect of pH, solute concentration, and ionic size/charge on the ionic selectivity of the functionalized MoS2 membranes is also reported. The potential dependant study of these dye functionalized MoS2 membranes for ionic sieving with charge selectivity should enable future applications in electro-dialysis and ion exchange for water treatment technologies.
Original languageEnglish
Article number015030
Journal2D Materials
Issue number1
Early online date22 Nov 2019
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020


  • MoS2
  • functionalization
  • ionic sieving
  • size exclusion
  • water purification
  • osmotic power


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