Engineers discover novel role of water in production of renewable fuels

phys.org | 3/7/2019 | Staff
TaylorShaye (Posted by) Level 3
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University of Oklahoma engineers in collaboration with the University of Tulsa have discovered a novel approach for the water-assisted upgrading of the renewable chemical, furfural, doubling or tripling the rate of conversion.

"Energy and water are interconnected in the production of renewable fuels. On the one hand, energy is needed to extract, purify and distribute water. On the other hand, water is useful in producing energy," said Daniel Resasco, professor in the School of Chemical, Biological and Materials Engineering, Gallogly College of Engineering. "It is known that water plays an important role as an environmentally-friendly solvent, replacing organic solvents. The novelty is that it can accelerate the rate of hydrogenation."

Chemical - Production - Energy - Refining - Presence

In the chemical production of energy in conventional refining, the presence of water in the reactors is undesirable. Normally, when water is present in a reacting system where a catalytic reaction is taking place, it typically absorbs where the reaction should occur, which inhibits the rate of conversion.

"A group of chemical engineering graduate and undergraduate students participated in...
(Excerpt) Read more at: phys.org
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