Donnan membrane equilibrium studies of mercury salts with Nafion-117 membrane

Chhavi Agarwal, Sanhita Chaudhury, Amol Mhatre, A. Goswami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The Donnan membrane equilibrium experiments using two compartment cell have been carried out to understand the effect of speciation on the transport behavior of mercury ion through Nafion-117 ion-exchange membrane. The mercury ions have been observed to rapidly permeate to Cl- side from Hg(NO3)2 solution, showing the extraordinary preference of mercury ions for Cl- ion in aqueous solution. On the other hand, from HgCl2 solution, slow permeation of mercury ions through the membrane has been observed. Also the transport of mercury ion from HgCl2 solution has been found to be higher than expected based on Donnan membrane equilibrium principle considering the ionic concentration of HgCl2 calculated using speciation diagram. This has been attributed to the leakage of neutral HgCl2 molecules through the membrane. The leakage of neutral HgCl2 species through Nafion-117 membrane has been confirmed in different cationic forms of the membrane. An attempt has been made to determine the concentration of cationic mercury species in aqueous HgCl2 solution using conditions of Donnan membrane equilibrium. The total cationic mercury species has been found to be higher than that predicted by speciation calculations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-226
Number of pages5
JournalDesalination and Water Treatment
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Donnan equilibrium
  • Ion-exchange
  • Mercury speciation
  • Nafion-117

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Pollution


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