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Cracking of Green Ammonia to Hydrogen by Synergistic Combination of Thermocatalysis and Plasma Technology.

Ammonia is a promising hydrogen carrier due to its high hydrogen density, but a missing link is an energy-efficient technology for ammonia cracking to produce hydrogen gas. The most explored option is thermocatalytic cracking, but this solution requires high temperatures to achieve near complete conversion, especially when using noble metal-free catalysts. Plasma cracking of ammonia is not limited by the same thermodynamic equilibrium as the applied electrical energy selectively heats electrons, due to their small mass, creating a thermal non-equilibrium. The highly energetic electrons can break up ammonia molecules and achieve higher conversions at lower bulk temperatures. The main downside of plasma cracking is the relatively high energy cost. During this PhD, a process, which combines the benefits of thermocatalytic and plasma cracking, will be explored. A packed bed reactor partly converts ammonia to H2 and N2 (>50 %). The outlet of the catalytic reactor is sent to the plasma reactor, where the remaining ammonia is converted as much as possible (aiming at > 99%). The first objective of this PhD is to develop a noble metal-free catalysts with high activity for ammonia cracking, without aiming at complete conversion. The second objective is to join the catalytic and plasma reactor and find the optimal combination of process parameters (temperatures, flow rates, conversion efficiencies, energy requirements) to minimize total energy cost and maximize synergy production rate.
Date:1 Nov 2022 →  Today
Disciplines:Energy conversion, Heterogeneous catalysis, Reacting systems, Chemical process design, Powder and particle technology
Project type:Collaboration project