Ammonia is commonly used as a fertilizer because it has a high amount of nitrogen in commercial plants, so it is important for production. However, two carbon molecules are made for each molecule of ammonia produced, giving off carbon dioxide to the atmosphere.
A team from the Artie McFerrin Department of Chemistry at Texas A&M University Dr. Abdoulaye Djire, assistant professor, and graduate student Denis Johnson, developed a way to make ammonia through electrochemical processes, which helps reduce carbon emissions. This research hopes to replace the Haber-Bosch thermochemical process with an electrochemical process that is more stable and safe for the environment.
The researchers republished their findings on Scientific Evidence.
Since the early 1900s, the Haber-Bosch process has been used to make ammonia. This process works by mixing atmospheric nitrogen with hydrogen gas. The low disadvantage of the Haber-Bosch process is that it requires high pressure and high temperature, leaving a large energy footprint. Hydrogen feedstock, which come from non -convertible sources, also need to be considered. It cannot be sustained and has negative effects on the environment, accelerating the benefits of new processes and the environment.
The researchers proposed to use an electrochemical nitrogen reduction reaction (NRR) to produce ammonia from ice and water. The advantages of using an electrochemical method with the use of water to deliver protons and the ability to produce ammonia at temperature and pressure. This process may require a lower energy efficiency and be more cost-effective and more environmentally friendly than the Haber-Bosch process.
The NRR was performed using an electrocatalyst. For this process to be successful, nitrogen must be trapped in the skin and broken down to make ammonia. In this study, the researchers used MXene, a titanium nitride, as an electrocatalyst. What sets this catalyst apart from the others is the nitrogen in its nature, which allows for the formation of more efficient ammonia.
“Ammonia is easy to make because the protons can bind to nitrogen inside the house, make the ammonia and then leave the ammonia out of the house,” Johnson said. “A hole was made in the building that could pull the nitrogen gas in and separate the third block.”
The researchers discovered the use of titanium nitride to power the Mars-van Krevelen engine, a popular device for hydrocarbon oxidation. This machine follows a low energy path that allows for a higher amount of ammonia production and selection based on nitrogen from the titanium nitride catalyst.
Without changing the ingredients, the researchers reached an option of 20%, which is the ratio of the desired product compared to the unwanted product. Their mechanism can rise to a high selectivity percentage with modifications, creating a new way in the production of ammonia through electrochemical processes.
“The Department of Energy has set a target of a 60%vote, which is a tough number to achieve,” Johnson said. “We’ve been able to get to 20% using our stuff, which shows a way we can make the most of moving forward. Answer.”
This research can reduce carbon footprint and solar energy use in a significant way.
“In the future, this is a major scientific study,” Djire said. “About 2% of the world’s energy is used to make ammonia. Reducing that amount will greatly reduce our carbon footprint and energy use. . ”
Other contributors to the printing were Eric Kelley from the chemical engineering department at Texas A&M, Brock Hunter from Auburn University, and Jevaun Christie and Cullan King from Prairie View A&M University.
New alchemy to carbon neutrality: Converting water to ammonia with new energy
Denis Johnson et al, Ti2N nitride MXene developed the Mars-van Krevelen machine to achieve high selectivity for nitrogen reduction. Scientific Evidence (2022). DOI: 10.1038 / s41598-021-04640-7
Presented by Texas A&M University
Directions: The production of ammonia through electrochemical processes can reduce carbon dioxide emissions (2022, April 8) Retrieved 9 April 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022 -04-ammonia-electrochemical-carbon-dioxide-emissions.html
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