Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New catalyst could help

04.12.2003


A new catalyst could help auto makers meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s deadline to eliminate 95 percent of nitrogen-oxide from diesel engine exhausts by 2007, while saving energy.



Developed by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, the new catalyst is one of a family of related catalysts that also shows promise for reducing NOx emissions from industrial sources, such as coal-fired power plants and furnaces at chemical plants and refineries.

Nitrogen oxides — collectively called "NOx" — contribute to smog, acid rain and global climate change.


"For diesel engines, we envision manufacturers placing ceramic catalytic reactors in the exhaust pipes, where they will convert NOx emissions into nitrogen," said inventor Chris Marshall of Argonne’s Chemical Engineering Division. Nitrogen is a harmless gas that makes up more than 80 percent of the Earth’s atmosphere.

"Our most promising catalyst for diesel engines," Marshall said, "is Cu-ZSM-5 with an external coating of cerium oxide." Cu-ZSM-5 is a zeolite doped with copper; zeolites are common catalysts used in petroleum refining.

Those working previously with Cu-ZSM-5 and similar catalysts, he said, found that they performed poorly at removing NOx from diesel exhaust. They require temperatures higher than normal exhaust temperatures and don’t work well in the presence of water vapor, which is almost always found in engine exhausts.

"Our new cerium oxide additive," he said, "is the breakthrough that makes it work. When it’s combined with Cu-ZSM-5, the resulting catalyst works at normal exhaust temperatures and is actually more effective with water vapor than without it. With a lean fuel-air mixture, it removes as much as 95 to 100 percent of NOx emissions."

Argonne’s new catalysts also avoid the problems associated with ammonia, which competing catalysts generate.

"The current standard is ammonia-selective catalytic reduction, using urea as the source," Marshall said, "but ammonia is toxic, and unless all of it is converted during the process, whatever remains is released to the atmosphere. While some European diesel manufacturers are taking the urea approach, U.S. diesel manufacturers are looking for alternatives." Since a system using the new catalyst would not require an on-board urea storage tank, the new catalyst is considered safer and more energy-efficient.

"We’re also looking at other elements that may work better than cerium under certain engine conditions," he said. "Zirconia shows good promise."

Initial research on the cerium-oxide catalyst was funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. The catalyst was developed for chemical plant emissions under a joint research agreement with BP. Research plans call for expanded work aimed at both diesel and natural gas engines and coal-fired power plants.

A patent application has been filed on the new catalyst and it is expected to be available for licensing.

The nation’s first national laboratory, Argonne National Laboratory conducts basic and applied scientific research across a wide spectrum of disciplines, ranging from high-energy physics to climatology and biotechnology. Since 1990, Argonne has worked with more than 600 companies and numerous federal agencies and other organizations to help advance America’s scientific leadership and prepare the nation for the future. Argonne is operated by the University of Chicago for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

For more information, please contact Catherine Foster (630/252-5580 or media@anl.gov) at Argonne.

Catherine Foster | DOE/Argonne National Laboratory
Further information:
http://www.anl.gov/OPA/news03/news031128.htm

More articles from Transportation and Logistics:

nachricht Study sets new distance record for medical drone transport
13.09.2017 | Johns Hopkins Medicine

nachricht Researchers 'count cars' -- literally -- to find a better way to control heavy traffic
10.08.2017 | Florida Atlantic University

All articles from Transportation and Logistics >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

Im Focus: Fast, convenient & standardized: New lab innovation for automated tissue engineering & drug

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems...

Im Focus: Silencing bacteria

HZI researchers pave the way for new agents that render hospital pathogens mute

Pathogenic bacteria are becoming resistant to common antibiotics to an ever increasing degree. One of the most difficult germs is Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Molecular Force Sensors

20.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Producing electricity during flight

20.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

20.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>