Our main objective is to generate new strategies in thermal catalysis, encompassing the catalyst nanostructure, the reaction conditions and reactor design, to overcome the current limitations of implementation of sustainable processes.
The research aims to establish a new generation of catalysts able to convert CO2, CO, CH4 and H2 mixtures, as well as biomass carbon sources, into key chemicals. These catalysts should be capable to adapt to different gas compositions and temperatures, and to work efficiently with unconventional energy inputs such as electric or inductive heating. The use of tandem catalysts with two or more functionalities in combination with thermally robust and deactivation resistant supports, offers an opportunity to develop one-stage processes.
We study the reactions kinetics and catalytic performance of multifunctional catalytic materials with complex but well-defined compositions. Composites based on nano-tailored metal and metal oxides in combination with zeolite catalysts count with the advantage that zeolites are supports with meso and microporosity that can stand the temperatures required by most of the studied processes. In addition, confinement of metal ions and metal oxides in the microporous channels of zeolites results in additional catalytic advantages: the molecular size of the zeolite micropores has an impact in transition state energies, and introduces shape selectivity, directing catalysis to specific products.