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Technical Paper

Experimental and Kinetic Modeling of Degreened and Aged Three-way Catalysts: Aging Impact on Oxygen Storage Capacity and Catalyst Performance

The aging impact on oxygen storage capacity (OSC) and catalyst performance was investigated on one degreened and one aged (hydrothermally aged at 955 °C for 50 h) commercial three-way catalyst (TWC) by experiments and modeling. The difference of OSC between the degreened and aged TWCs was dependent on catalyst temperature. The largest difference was found at 600 °C, at which the amount of OSC decreased by 45.5%. Catalyst performance was evaluated through lightoff tests at two simulated engine exhaust conditions (lean and rich) on a micro-reactor. The aging impact on the catalyst performance was different under lean and rich environments and investigated separately. At the lean condition, oxidation of CO and C3H6 was significantly suppressed while oxidation of C3H8 was relatively less degraded. At the rich condition, the inhibition effect was more pronounced on the aged TWC and inhibiting hydrocarbon species from C3H6 partial oxidation can survive at temperatures up to 450 °C.
Journal Article

Effect of Transition Metal Ion Properties on the Catalytic Functions and Sulfation Behavior of Zeolite-Based SCR Catalysts

Copper- and Iron- based metal-zeolite SCR catalysts are widely used in US and European diesel aftertreatment systems to achieve drastic reduction in NOx emission. These catalysts are highly selective to N2 under wide range of operating conditions. Nevertheless, the type of transition metal has a significant impact on the key performance and durability parameters such as NOx conversion, selectivity towards N2O, hydrothermal stability, and sensitivity to fuel sulfur content. In this study, we explained the differences in the performance characteristics of these catalysts based on their relative acidic-basic nature of transition metal present in these catalysts using practically relevant gas species present in diesel exhaust such as NO2, SOx, and NH3. These experiments show that Fe-zeolite has relatively acidic nature as compared to Cu-zeolite that causes NH3 inhibition and hence explains low NOx conversion on Fe-zeolite at low temperature under standard SCR conditions.
Journal Article

Impact of Accelerated Hydrothermal Aging on Structure and Performance of Cu-SSZ-13 SCR Catalysts

In this contribution, nuanced changes of a commercial Cu-SSZ-13 catalyst with hydrothermal aging, which have not been previously reported, as well as their corresponding impact on SCR functions, are described. In particular, a sample of Cu-SSZ-13 was progressively aged between 550 to 900°C and the changes of performance in NH3 storage, oxidation functionality and NOx conversion of the catalyst were measured after hydrothermal exposure at each temperature. The catalysts thus aged were further characterized by NH3-TPD, XRD and DRIFTS techniques for structural changes. Based on the corresponding performance and structural characteristics, three different regimes of hydrothermal aging were identified, and tentatively as assigned to “mild”, “severe” and “extreme” aging. Progressive hydrothermal aging up to 750°C decreased NOx conversion to a small degree, as well as NH3 storage and oxidation functions.
Technical Paper

New Insights into the Unique Operation of Small Pore Cu-Zeolite SCR Catalyst: Overlapping NH3 Desorption and Oxidation Characteristics for Minimizing Undesired Products

An operational challenge associated with SCR catalysts is the NH3 slip control, particularly for commercial small pore Cu-zeolite formulations as a consequence of their significant ammonia storage capacity. The desorption of NH3 during increasing temperature transients is one example of this challenge. Ammonia slipping from SCR catalyst typically passes through a platinum based ammonia oxidation catalyst (AMOx), leading to the formation of the undesired byproducts NOx and N2O. We have discovered a distinctive characteristic, an overlapping NH3 desorption and oxidation, in a state-of-the-art Cu-zeolite SCR catalyst that can minimize NH3 slip during temperature transients encountered in real-world operation of a vehicle.
Journal Article

Hydrocarbon Storage on Small-Pore Cu-Zeolite SCR Catalyst

In this study we investigated the interaction of short- and long-chain hydrocarbons (HCs), represented by propene (C₃H₆) and n-dodecane (n-C₁₂H₂₆), respectively, with a state-of-the-art small-pore Cu-Zeolite SCR catalyst. By varying HC adsorption conditions, we determined that physisorption was the primary mechanism for some minor HC storage at low temperatures (≺ 200°C), while chemical transformation was involved in more substantial HC storage at higher temperatures (200-400°C). The latter was evidenced by the oxygen-dependent and thermally activated nature of the storage process, and further confirmed by the carbon-rich composition of the deposits. The nature of HC-derived deposits of different origins and amounts was further probed using the standard SCR reaction at kinetically challenging conditions (at 200°C), as well by ammonia adsorption/desorption experiments.
Journal Article

Axially Resolved Performance of Cu-Zeolite SCR Catalysts

In this work, an alternative method is proposed and validated for quantifying the axial performance of a state-of-the-art Cu zeolite SCR catalyst. Catalyst cores of a standard length, with varying lengths of wash-coated regions were used to axially resolve the functional performance of the SCR catalyst. This proposed method was validated by quantifying the catalyst entrance and exit effects, as well as the effect of non-uniform wash-coat loading densities. This method is less susceptible to some of the complications highlighted in the previous studies, such as flow uniformity between channels, as well as radiative heating effects, since the product gases are sampled across the entire monolith cross-section rather than through a single catalyst channel. The specific catalyst functions quantified include: NO and NH₃ oxidation, NH₃ storage capacity, as well as NOx conversion efficiency.