NASA 1996 SBIR Phase I


PROPOSAL NUMBER : 96-1 16.08-1322

PROJECT TITLE : RELIABLE CARBON-BASED OXIDATION CATALYSTS

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)

Reductions in the expendable resources required to operate water recovery systems under development for spacecraft is needed for more cost-effective presence of man in space. Water recovery systems are currently designed using multi-filtration combined with catalytic oxidation. Current catalytic oxidation processes use a fixed-bed noble metal catalyst supported on alumina. Over an order of magnitude more activity can be obtained using noble metals supported on granular activated carbon (GAC) instead of alumina, according to extensive research within NASA and industry. However, GAC is susceptible to long-term chemical degradation (oxidation of solid carbon to CO2) and mechanical degradation (due to shear forces) under reactor process conditions. The purpose of this program is to develop innovative, improved carbon-supported catalysts and to further investigate and develop new oxidation-resistance treatments. Phase I will consist of development, preparation, and testing of supports. The monolithic structure will be much more resistant to shear forces than GAC and will be combined with oxidation-resistant treatments to develop high-activity, physically reliable catalysts. The long-term goal of this program is to upgrade catalyst strength and efficiency, achieving the advantages of lower operating power requirements (by lowering operating temperatures), higher organics load capabilities, and better long-term reactor reliability.
POTENTIAL COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS
The project is supported by major commercial catalyst applications as it will lead to a new class of catalysts that improve process economics for industrial water and air treatment, pollution control, environmental remediation, and ultra-pure water production. Over 6,000 world-wide applications are estimated.
NAME AND ADDRESS OF PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR
NAME AND ADDRESS OF OFFEROR
Environmental & Life Support Technology, Inc.
12838 W. Adriatic Ave.
Lakewood, CO 80228