Researchers at Washington State University, New Mexico University, Eindhoven University of Technology, and the Northwest National Laboratory in the Pacific developed catalysts that can withstand high temperatures and convert pollutants at room temperature. This is to reduce pollution in modern cars.
They report on their work in the journal Nature Communications .
Catalyst converters in the US have been used since the 1
However, as cars become more fuel efficient. they use less energy and lower the exhaust gas temperature, making it more difficult to clean up the pollutants. Indeed, the US Energy Department has set a target of 90 per cent of harmful emissions at 150 degrees Celsius or below.
The catalysts must operate at low temperatures but must survive under the acute conditions that occurred during an operation. 19659005] "The catalyst problem has risen as cars become better and more efficient," said Emiel Hensen, catalysis professor at Eindhoven University of Technology.
Meanwhile, the industry is struggling with the high cost of precious metals required for catalysis. Platinum, for example, facilitates chemical reactions to many commonly used products and process but costs more than $ 800 per ounce.
The catalyst has developed the researchers based on single atoms of platinum to activate a cerium oxide to activate. While its catalyst succeeds in the current technology, it also reduces the amount of platinum required, thus reducing overall costs.
"The industry wants to use all single atoms of precious metals, which is why one-atom catalysis attracted more attention," said Abhaya Datye, a renowned professor in the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering of UNM.
In their most recent work, the researchers ensured that their catalysts were thermally stable, crossing platinum ions on cellular oxide support at very high temperatures. Because of its synthesis method, the platinum atoms had to make a strong connection with their support. They then activated the catalyst in carbon monoxide at about 275 degrees Celsius.
"To find a surprise, we found that the high temperature synthesis of the ceria made it more readily available, allowing it to supply its main ingredient – oxygen-to active sites," said Yong Wang, Appropriate Professor of Voiland in Gene. and Linda Voiland in the School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering at WSU.
Activated oxygen was then able to remove pollutants at room temperature at platinum sites.
"This research focuses directly on the 150-degree challenge to the US Energy Department and automobile companies," said Wang. "It is extremely useful to find the oxygen activation at close room temperature, and this result could have a significant impact on exhaust emission control technology."
The researchers now intend to study the performance of catalysts of any atoms with compounds and pollutants. The work for the Multiple Catalyst Energy Conversion was funded by the Department of Energy and the Research Center in the Netherlands.
Find out more:
The new catalyst meets the challenge of cleaning out modern engines
Nature Communications (2019). DOI: 10.1038 / s41467-019-09308-5