(464c) Swellable Organically Modified Silica (SOMS) As a Catalyst Scaffold for Catalytic Treatment of Water through Hydrogenation and Hydrogenolysis Reactions
Ground water contamination by halogenated hydrocarbons or by aromatics is a growing concern. Existing technologies such as adsorption or air stripping suffer from incomplete degradation of the contaminants or their transfer from one medium to another such as water-to-land or water-to-air. In this study, we are investigating the catalytic conversion of these contaminants through catalytic hyrdogenolysis or hydrogenation reactions. What is unique about this study is that we are using a novel material, swellable organically modified silica (SOMS) as a catalyst scaffold for the active metals. SOMS, which is very hydrophobic and has a high affinity for organics, allows the concentration of the contaminants in the vicinity of the active sites, hence helping the activity. It also repels anions which act catalyst poisons (chlorides, sulfates, nitrates), hence helping the catalyst stability. Characterization experiments were performed under ex-situ and in-situ conditions using techniques such as extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS), Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), high angle annular dark field (HAADF) scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM), energy-dispersive X-ray analysis (EDAX), inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES), mass spectrometry, and laser Raman spectroscopy. Kinetic results from a batch reactor will also be presented.