ARF04 - Hydrogen Generation from Renewable Waste Product Streams Using Supercritical Water Oxidation
Dr. Paul Charpentier, Faculty of Engineering Science, The University of Western Ontario
The University of Western Ontario and Purifics Ltd., both from London, Ontario are linking their expertise to solve one of our major 21st century crises, that of the need to eliminate hazardous wastes from municipal water sources, along with the ability to generate energy from this waste such as hydrogen. The researchers are exploring amobile Supercritical Water Partial Oxidation (SCPO) gasification process for generating hydrogen from high water content waste streams, coupled to Purifics Photo-Cat advanced oxidation process for completely polishing the water to drinking water standards. A small lab-scale unit has been setup at Western for these studies.
In addition, this system is studying other fluids such as ethanol for processing biomass feedstocks into useful chemicals for applications in plastics, pharmaceuticals, etc. Initial results show that the supercritical water (SCW) techniques can be are excellent alternatives to conventional reforming for producing hydrogen at a competitive price, along with producing drinking quality water from waste disposal applications. A key technology hurdle being addressed is the catalyst design for this process, where Western researchers are harnessing nanotechnology for producing ceramic catalysts that do not degrade under the high temperature and corrosive conditions encountered in the reactor.
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