Catalytic oxidation of NO to NO2 for nitric acid production over a Pt/Al2O3 catalyst
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionApplied Catalysis A : General. 2018, 562 142-146. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apcata.2018.07.019
The oxidation of nitric oxide (NO) to nitrogen dioxide (NO2) is a key step both in NOx abatement technologies as well as in the Ostwald process for nitric acid production. A 1 wt.% Pt/Al2O3 catalyst was used to study oxidation of nitric oxide at two different concentrations of NO; 400 ppm NO (representative of engine exhaust treatment) and 10% NO (nitric acid plant). The catalyst was characterised using N2 adsorption and CO chemisorption. The effect of temperature and feed concentration on catalytic activity was investigated. For a feed comprising of 10% NO and 6% O2, Pt/Al2O3 exhibits significant catalytic activity above 300oC. Addition of 15% H2O in the feed had an insignificant effect on activity of the catalyst. We report for the first time the kinetics for oxidation of NO to NO2 under nitric acid plant conditions. An apparent activation energy of 33 kJ/mol was observed. The rate equation for the overall reaction was determined to be r=kfKG(PO2) 0.5, where kf is the forward rate constant. The reaction is independent of NO concentration while it has half order dependency on oxygen. The reaction mechanism which fits our experimental observation consists of dissociative adsorption of oxygen, associative adsorption of nitric oxide with desorption of nitrogen dioxide as the rate limiting step.