The Influence of Ammonia to NOX Ratio on SCR Performance
It is likely that use of urea-based selective catalytic reduction (SCR) will be needed to meet U.S. Tier 2 diesel emission standards for oxides of nitrogen (NOx). The ideal ratio of ammonia (NH3) molecules to NOx molecules (known as alpha) is 1:1 based on urea consumption and having NH3 available for reaction of all of the exhaust NOx. However, SCR efficiency can be less than 100% at low temperatures in general, and at higher temperatures with high exhaust SCR catalyst space velocities. At the low temperatures where NOx conversion efficiency is low, it may be advantageous to reduce the alpha ratio to values less than one (less NH3 than is needed to convert 100% of the NOx emissions) to avoid NH3 slip. At higher space velocities and high temperatures, the NOx conversion efficiency may be higher with alpha ratios greater than 1. There is however concern that the additional NH3 will be slipped under these conditions.