Overcoming the engineering constraints for scaling-up the state-of-the-art catalyst for tail-gas N2O decomposition

Ignacio Melian-cabrera, Silvia Espinosa, Cristina Mentruit, Blaine Murray, Lorena Falco, Joseph Socci, Freek Kapteijn, Jacob A. Moulijn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


An efficient process is reported for preparing a state-of-the-art Fe-ferrierite catalyst for N2O decomposition under industrial tail-gas conditions. In the synthesis procedure we evaluate the very demanding constraints for scale-up; i.e. large reactor volumes are typically needed, long processing times and considerable amounts of waste water is generated. The proposed synthesis minimizes the amount of water used, and therefore the amount produced waste water is minimal; in this approach there is no liquid residual water stream that would need intensive processing. This has remarkable benefits in terms of process design, since the volume of equipment is reduced and the energy-intensive filtration is eliminated. This route exemplifies the concept of process intensification, with the ambition to re-engineer an existing process to make the industrial catalyst manufacture more sustainable. The so-obtained catalyst is active, selective and very stable under tail gas conditions containing H2O, NO and O2, together with N2O; keeping a high conversion during 70 h time on stream at 700 K, with a decay of 0.01%/h, while the standard reference catalyst decays at 0.06%/h; hence it deactivates six times slower, with ~5% absolute points of higher conversion. The excellent catalytic performance is ascribed to the differential speciation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)939-945
JournalIndustrial and Engineering Chemistry Research
Issue number3
Early online date26 Dec 2017
Publication statusPublished - 24 Jan 2018

Bibliographical note

This document is the Accepted Manuscript version of a Published Work that appeared in final form in Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, copyright © American Chemical Society after peer review and technical editing by the publisher. To access the final edited and published work see http://doi.org/10.1021/acs.iecr.7b04584.

Funding: European Commission (HPMF‐CT‐2002‐01873)


  • environmental catalysis
  • scale‐up, zeolites
  • N2O emissions
  • greenhouse gases


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