(544fx) CO2-Free Hydrogen Production from Crude Oil through Microwave-Assisted Catalytic Deep Dehydrogenation
With the critical need for alternative energy resource, abundant and readily accessible fossil fuels will remain the major energy source in the short- and middle-term. The consumption of fossil fuels in recent decades has brought severe problems like anthropogenic climate change and potential ecological destruction owing to the massive emissions of carbon dioxide. Decarbonization, a CO2-free process wherein hydrocarbons are used to produce hydrogen instead of burning, is becoming an attractive direction for fossil fuel utilization. Our recent studies reported a highly efficient and rapid route to produce hydrogen and elemental carbon from wax and diesel through microwave-assisted catalytic deep dehydrogenation, and nearly no carbon dioxide was emitted in this process. In the present work, activated carbon was used as the support for iron catalyst in microwave-assisted deep dehydrogenation of crude oil. SEM, TEM, TPO, Raman and XRD were employed to characterize the catalysts and interrogate the carbon deposition. Hydrogen was the dominant product and there was nearly no carbon dioxide emission. The characterization of the spent catalysts revealed that the deposited carbon on catalyst was consisted of hollow carbon nanotubes and graphitic ribbons, and it had more disordered structures compared to activated carbon. The formation of iron carbide was also detected in the used catalyst. Emulsion feed can significantly promote the hydrogen production, owing to diminishing the carbon deposition and micro-explosion phenomenon.