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Technical Paper

Characterization of Aging Effect on Three-Way Catalyst Oxygen Storage Dynamics

The Three Way Catalyst (TWC) is an effective pollutant conversion system widely used in current production vehicles to satisfy emissions regulations. A TWC’s conversion efficiency degrades over time due to chemical and/or thermal mechanisms causing the catalyst to age. This reduction in conversion efficiency must be accounted for to ensure full useful life emissions compliance. This paper presents an experimental study of the aging impact on TWC performance. Four TWCs differentiated by their age, given in terms of miles driven, were tested. It is shown that the dynamics of oxygen storage are substantially affected by aging of the TWC. A previously developed physics-based oxygen storage model [1] is subsequently used to incorporate the effect of aging on the total Oxygen Storage Capacity (OSC). Parameter identification results for the different age catalysts show that total oxygen storage capacity decreases substantially with aging and is insensitive to operating conditions.