The effect of impurities on the steam reforming of ethanol over ruthenium/alumina

Bilal, M. and Jackson, S. D. (2014) The effect of impurities on the steam reforming of ethanol over ruthenium/alumina. Catalysis Science and Technology, 4(11), pp. 4055-4064. (doi:10.1039/c4cy00560k)

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Abstract

Steam reforming of bioethanol is a promising route for H2 production. However, the presence of impurities in technical bioethanol has a significant influence on the activity and lifetime of the catalyst. Therefore, the aim of this project was to study the influence of C3-impurities (1-propanol, 2-propanol (IPA), propanal, acetone and propyl amine) on the steam reforming of ethanol over Ru/Al2O3 at 773 K and 20 barg. It was found that the addition of C3-alcohols significantly decreased the conversion of ethanol and increased the rate of catalyst deactivation. This deactivation of the catalyst in the presence of C3-alcohols was attributed to high olefin formation and incomplete decomposition of the C3-alcohols, which resulted in coke formation over the catalyst. In contrast propyl amine and acetone addition maintained high ethanol conversion throughout the time on stream. However analysis of the product distribution suggested that the main reaction was ethanol decomposition taking place over the support and that the metal was completely deactivated for steam reforming. The addition of acetone to ethanol also significantly changed the nature of coke from graphitic to amorphous carbon. The addition of propanal resulted in behaviour initially akin to propanol but eventually moved to selectivity similar to that found with acetone.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Jackson, Professor David
Authors: Bilal, M., and Jackson, S. D.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Chemistry
Journal Name:Catalysis Science and Technology
Publisher:R S C Publications
ISSN:2044-4753
ISSN (Online):2044-4761

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