Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 2

Search results for: XTL

2 O-Functionalized CNT Mediated CO Hydro-Deoxygenation and Chain Growth

Authors: K. Mondal, S. Talapatra, M. Terrones, S. Pokhrel, C. Frizzel, B. Sumpter, V. Meunier, A. L. Elias

Abstract:

Worldwide energy independence is reliant on the ability to leverage locally available resources for fuel production. Recently, syngas produced through gasification of carbonaceous materials provided a gateway to a host of processes for the production of various chemicals including transportation fuels. The basis of the production of gasoline and diesel-like fuels is the Fischer Tropsch Synthesis (FTS) process: A catalyzed chemical reaction that converts a mixture of carbon monoxide (CO) and hydrogen (H2) into long chain hydrocarbons. Until now, it has been argued that only transition metal catalysts (usually Co or Fe) are active toward the CO hydrogenation and subsequent chain growth in the presence of hydrogen. In this paper, we demonstrate that carbon nanotube (CNT) surfaces are also capable of hydro-deoxygenating CO and producing long chain hydrocarbons similar to that obtained through the FTS but with orders of magnitude higher conversion efficiencies than the present state-of-the-art FTS catalysts. We have used advanced experimental tools such as XPS and microscopy techniques to characterize CNTs and identify C-O functional groups as the active sites for the enhanced catalytic activity. Furthermore, we have conducted quantum Density Functional Theory (DFT) calculations to confirm that C-O groups (inherent on CNT surfaces) could indeed be catalytically active towards reduction of CO with H2, and capable of sustaining chain growth. The DFT calculations have shown that the kinetically and thermodynamically feasible route for CO insertion and hydro-deoxygenation are different from that on transition metal catalysts. Experiments on a continuous flow tubular reactor with various nearly metal-free CNTs have been carried out and the products have been analyzed. CNTs functionalized by various methods were evaluated under different conditions. Reactor tests revealed that the hydrogen pre-treatment reduced the activity of the catalysts to negligible levels. Without the pretreatment, the activity for CO conversion as found to be 7 µmol CO/g CNT/s. The O-functionalized samples showed very activities greater than 85 µmol CO/g CNT/s with nearly 100% conversion. Analyses show that CO hydro-deoxygenation occurred at the C-O/O-H functional groups. It was found that while the products were similar to FT products, differences in selectivities were observed which, in turn, was a result of a different catalytic mechanism. These findings now open a new paradigm for CNT-based hydrogenation catalysts and constitute a defining point for obtaining clean, earth abundant, alternative fuels through the use of efficient and renewable catalyst.

Keywords: CNT, CO hydro-deoxygenation, DFT, liquid fuels, XPS, XTL.

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1 Food Security Model and the Role of Community Empowerment: The Case of a Marginalized Village in Mexico, Tatoxcac, Puebla

Authors: Marco Antonio Lara De la Calleja, MarĂ­a Catalina Ovando Chico, Eduardo Lopez Ruiz

Abstract:

Community empowerment has been proved to be a key element in the solution of the food security problem. As a result of a conceptual analysis, it was found that agricultural production, economic development and governance, are the traditional basis of food security models. Although the literature points to social inclusion as an important factor for food security, no model has considered it as the basis of it. The aim of this research is to identify different dimensions that make an integral model for food security, with emphasis on community empowerment. A diagnosis was made in the study community (Tatoxcac, Zacapoaxtla, Puebla), to know the aspects that impact the level of food insecurity. With a statistical sample integrated by 200 families, the Latin American and Caribbean Food Security Scale (ELCSA) was applied, finding that: in households composed by adults and children, have moderated food insecurity, (ELCSA scale has three levels, low, moderated and high); that result is produced mainly by the economic income capacity and the diversity of the diet on its food. With that being said, a model was developed to promote food security through five dimensions: 1. Regional context of the community; 2. Structure and system of local food; 3. Health and nutrition; 4. Information and technology access; and 5. Self-awareness and empowerment. The specific actions on each axis of the model, allowed a systemic approach needed to attend food security in the community, through the empowerment of society. It is concluded that the self-awareness of local communities is an area of extreme importance, which must be taken into account for participatory schemes to improve food security. In the long term, the model requires the integrated participation of different actors, such as government, companies and universities, to solve something such vital as food security.

Keywords: Community empowerment, food security, model, systemic approach.

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