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Iranian researchers from Kashan University produced a catalyst based on magnesium oxide nano-crystals that in addition to having high activity and stability has very high resistance against carbon formation.
Results of the research have application in various industries, including steel industry, production of syngas for reduction of iron oxide and production of sponge iron, petrochemical industries, and production of syngas as raw feed for the production of methanol, ammonia, acetic acid, and so forth.
In the first stage of the research, magnesium oxide with mesoporous structure, high specific area, and nanocrystalline properties was synthesized as the catalyst bed through deposition method. Next, the active part of nickel was inoculated with various weight percents on the catalyst bed. The synthesized catalysts were next subjected to characterization and reactor tests. Based on the obtained results, the catalyst with the optimum load was selected and the effect of reaction parameters on its performance was investigated. Finally, the results obtained from this experiment were compared with those obtained from common industrial catalysts.
The use of this catalyst bed with the abovementioned properties resulted in high dispersion of the active part of nickel on the surface of the catalyst bed, which consequently increased the activity and stability of the catalyst in comparison with the commercial catalyst.
Among the plans that will be investigated by the researchers in the near future, mention can be made of the addition of various percentages of alkali and alkaline-earth metals as promoter on this catalyst and studying their effect on steam reforming of methane and also on dry reforming of methane.
Results of the research have been published in Chinese Journal of Catalysis, vol. 34, issue 7, July 2013, pp. 1443-1448.
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