GÓMEZ-CÁPIRO, O.; HINKLE, A.; DELGADO, A.; FERNÁNDEZ, C.; JIMÉNEZ, R.; ARTEAGA-PÉREZ, L.:
Catalysts, Volume 8:9 (2018) 347.
Biomass gasification is a promising way to obtain “green energy”, but the gas composition makes it unsuitable for use in traditional technologies (i.e., IC engine). Gas purification over nickel and/or iron catalysts is an attractive alternative. Cellulose-based carbon aerogels (CAGs) have shown suitable physical chemical properties for use as catalyst supports. In this work, nickel and iron catalysts are supported on CAG made from cellulose microfibers. Microfibers were impregnated with (NH4)2SO4 to increase the mass yield. Carbonization was evaluated at different heating rates, maximum temperatures, and dwell times to generate CAGs. Resulting chars were characterized by N2 adsorption, X-ray diffraction (XRD), and Raman spectroscopy. The CAG with better properties (specific surface, pore size, thermal resistance) was impregnated with the metal precursor salt via incipient wetness and treated with H2. Catalysts were characterized by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), XRD, N2 adsorption, and inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES). Ammonia adsorption was studied over CAG and catalysts to estimate the thermodynamic parameters. The impregnation with (NH4)2SO4 improves thermal resistance of the char obtained from carbonization. The catalysts exhibit higher adsorption capacity than CAG (without metal), indicating chemical interaction between ammonia and metals. The metal-ammonia interaction is stronger on Fe than on Ni catalyst, which is consistent with reported theoretical calculations.