Research Topic

Superwetting Interfaces for Oil/Water Separation

About this Research Topic

The increase of oil spill accidents, urban sewage and industrial oily wastewater disposal has become a global challenge which poses a serious threat to the ecosystem. Effective separation of oil and water from these waste streams has drawn great attention for sustainable concept of wastewater treatment. ...

The increase of oil spill accidents, urban sewage and industrial oily wastewater disposal has become a global challenge which poses a serious threat to the ecosystem. Effective separation of oil and water from these waste streams has drawn great attention for sustainable concept of wastewater treatment. Conventional methods, including coagulation, centrifuges, sedimentation, air flotation, and biological degradation, fail to effectively separate the oil and water, especially in oil/water emulsion solutions, which compromises the sustainable management of oil/water mixtures. Therefore, it is vital to develop interface chemistry and explore advanced strategies for sufficient separation device fabrication. For instance, controlling the interface nano/micro-structures towards a prevalent superhydrophobic property is a desirable strategy for oil/water separation.

This Research Topic will focus on the topic of surface property engineering and subsequent device fabrication. Inspired by nature, superwetting surfaces with super-hydrophobicity & oleophilicity or hydrophilicity & oleophobicity show superior properties such as anti-fouling, enhanced mass transfer, and effective separation. It also enables potential applications in sustainable treatment of oily wastewater streams. This Research Topic aims to cover the latest theories, innovations in developing and application of superwetting interfaces with superhydrophobicity and superoleophilicity (that selectively filter or absorb oil from oil/water mixtures), “water-removing” type interfaces with superhydrophilicity and superoleophobicity (that selectively separate water from oil/water mixtures), and smart controllable separation devices. Moreover, research referring to the physical chemistry of material surface design and the study on the mechanisms of separation processes is of particular interest, and mechanism investigation on the fluids separation and the multiphase flow is also required. Advanced separation processes for oil and water mixture is also encouraged, in view of sustainable treatment of oily wastewater streams. Original Research and Review articles are both welcome.

Potential themes for this Research Topic include, but are not limited to:
• Superhydrophobic interfaces for oil adsorption or filtration from oil/water mixtures
• Superhydrophilic & underwater superoelophobic interfaces, including meshes, filters or membranes, for oil/water separation
• Smart controllable interfaces which are responsive to, e.g. magnetic field, electrical field, pH, heat, and light, for separation of oil and water
• Advanced processes or devices for effective oil/water separation


Keywords: Superhydrophobic, Superhydrophilic, Oil/water separation, Porous membrane, Absorbent


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

27 July 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

27 July 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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