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 3D mobility: a reality check for flying taxis
08.01.2020 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO

nachricht New players, standardization and digitalization for more rail freight transport
16.07.2018 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)

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: A step towards controlling spin-dependent petahertz electronics by material defects

The operational speed of semiconductors in various electronic and optoelectronic devices is limited to several gigahertz (a billion oscillations per second). This constrains the upper limit of the operational speed of computing. Now researchers from the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter in Hamburg, Germany, and the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay have explained how these processes can be sped up through the use of light waves and defected solid materials.

Light waves perform several hundred trillion oscillations per second. Hence, it is natural to envision employing light oscillations to drive the electronic...

Im Focus: Freiburg researcher investigate the origins of surface texture

Most natural and artificial surfaces are rough: metals and even glasses that appear smooth to the naked eye can look like jagged mountain ranges under the microscope. There is currently no uniform theory about the origin of this roughness despite it being observed on all scales, from the atomic to the tectonic. Scientists suspect that the rough surface is formed by irreversible plastic deformation that occurs in many processes of mechanical machining of components such as milling.

Prof. Dr. Lars Pastewka from the Simulation group at the Department of Microsystems Engineering at the University of Freiburg and his team have simulated such...

Im Focus: Skyrmions like it hot: Spin structures are controllable even at high temperatures

Investigation of the temperature dependence of the skyrmion Hall effect reveals further insights into possible new data storage devices

The joint research project of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) that had previously demonstrated...

Im Focus: Making the internet more energy efficient through systemic optimization

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, recently completed a 5-year research project looking at how to make fibre optic communications systems more energy efficient. Among their proposals are smart, error-correcting data chip circuits, which they refined to be 10 times less energy consumptive. The project has yielded several scientific articles, in publications including Nature Communications.

Streaming films and music, scrolling through social media, and using cloud-based storage services are everyday activities now.

Im Focus: New synthesis methods enhance 3D chemical space for drug discovery

After helping develop a new approach for organic synthesis -- carbon-hydrogen functionalization -- scientists at Emory University are now showing how this approach may apply to drug discovery. Nature Catalysis published their most recent work -- a streamlined process for making a three-dimensional scaffold of keen interest to the pharmaceutical industry.

"Our tools open up whole new chemical space for potential drug targets," says Huw Davies, Emory professor of organic chemistry and senior author of the paper.

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

70th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting: Around 70 Laureates set to meet with young scientists from approx. 100 countries

12.02.2020 | Event News

11th Advanced Battery Power Conference, March 24-25, 2020 in Münster/Germany

16.01.2020 | Event News

Laser Colloquium Hydrogen LKH2: fast and reliable fuel cell manufacturing

15.01.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

NUI Galway highlights reproductive flexibility in hydractinia, a Galway bay jellyfish

24.02.2020 | Life Sciences

KIST researchers develop high-capacity EV battery materials that double driving range

24.02.2020 | Materials Sciences

How earthquakes deform gravity

24.02.2020 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>