Surfaces with remarkable non-wetting properties can be achieved via the presence of air pockets within the surface nano or micro structures or pockets of lubricating liquid rather than of air. Since maintaining air pockets are challenging, slippery liquid infused porous surfaces (SLIPS) have attracted a lot of attention recently. Outstanding properties of SLIPS consist of self-cleaning, self-healing by capillary wicking, anti-biofouling and multiphase transport without clogging. This concept found its application in membrane technology because of the ability to actively adjust and control selective fluid flow through liquid-gated membrane. In this case different phases can be collected while preventing the escape of any component by simply adjusting system pressure. This system has less chance of fouling because there is no direct contact between solid and transport liquid which makes it a potential candidate for membrane separation technology.
Liquid infiltrated membranes with adaptive pores which can coordinate multiphase transport without clogging, inspired us to check the ability of these novel type of membrane for separation of different types of emulsions. By controlling the system pressure according to the critical pressure of the components of the emulsions (the pressure needed to open the pore), it is possible to collect different components separately. Filtration and anti-fouling characteristics of these sort of membranes are of great interest as well. The dynamic ability of the liquid-lined pores to reversibly open and close pores in response to system pressure, allowing the system to be operated continuously with less chance of fouling.