New catalysts for the water gas shift reaction at middle-temperature

Tran, Quang Nguyen (2012) New catalysts for the water gas shift reaction at middle-temperature. [Laurea magistrale], Università di Bologna, Corso di Studio in Advanced spectroscopy in chemistry [LM-DM270]
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H2 demand is continuously increasing since its many relevant applications, for example, in the ammonia production, refinery processes or fuel cells. The Water Gas Shift (WGS) reaction (CO + H2O = CO2 + H2 DeltaH = -41.1 kJ.mol-1) is a step in the H2 production, reducing significantly the CO content and increasing the H2 one in the gas mixtures obtained from steam reforming. Industrially, the reaction is carried out in two stages with different temperature: the first stage operates at high temperature (350-450 °C) using Fe-based catalysts, while the second one is performed at lower temperature (190-250 °C) over Cu-based catalysts. However, recently, an increasing interest emerges to develop new catalytic formulations, operating in a single-stage at middle temperature (MTS), while maintaining optimum characteristics of activity and stability. These formulations may be obtained by improving activity and selectivity of Fe-based catalysts or increasing thermal stability of Cu-based catalysts. In the present work, Cu-based catalysts (Cu/ZnO/Al2O3) prepared starting from hydrotalcite-type precursors show good homogeneity and very interesting physical properties, which worsen by increasing the Cu content. Among the catalysts with different Cu contents, the catalyst with 20 wt.% of Cu represents the best compromise to obtain high catalytic activity and stability. On these bases, the catalytic performances seem to depend on both metallic Cu surface area and synergetic interactions between Cu and ZnO. The increase of the Al content enhances the homogeneity of the precursors, leading to a higher Cu dispersion and consequent better catalytic performances. The catalyst with 20 wt.% of Cu and a molar ratio M(II)/M(III) of 2 shows a high activity also at 250 °C and a good stability at middle temperature. Thus, it may be considered an optimum catalyst for the WGS reaction at middle temperature (about 300 °C). Finally, by replacing 50 % (as at. ratio) of Zn by Mg (which is not active in the WGS reaction), better physical properties were observed, although associate with poor catalytic performances. This result confirms the important role of ZnO on the catalytic performances, favoring synergetic interactions with metallic Cu.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di laurea (Laurea magistrale)
Autore della tesi
Tran, Quang Nguyen
Relatore della tesi
Correlatore della tesi
Corso di studio
Ordinamento Cds
Parole chiave
Water Gas Shift Reaction; Hydrogen production; heterogeneous catalyst; Hydrotalcite; reaction parameters.
Data di discussione della Tesi
20 Luglio 2012

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