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Zeolite Catalysis of Methanol


Radiation and Microwave Influence on the Synthesis of High Silica Zeolite Catalysts and on the Catalytic Conversion of Methanol

Tech Area / Field

  • CHE-IND/Industrial Chemistry and Chemical Process Engineering/Chemistry

3 Approved without Funding

Registration date

Leading Institute
National Polytechnical University of Armenia, Armenia, Yerevan

Supporting institutes

  • A.I. Alikhanyan National Science Laboratory, Armenia, Yerevan


  • Texas A&M University / Department of Chemical Engineering, USA, TX, College Station\nUniversity Centre in Svalbard, Norway, Longyearbyen\nUniversity of Cambridge / Department of Chemical Engineering, UK, Cambridge

Project summary

The development of modern chemical engineering in the field of heterogeneous catalysis is mainly determined by:
  • The search and creation of new highly effective systems with directed selective, physical-chemical, and catalytic properties;
  • The modernization of existing ones with improvement of their efficiency and selectivity.

In both cases a problem that is accordant with the statement of the American Chemical Society, is a decrease of material and power expenses of a process of synthesis, which can be achieved in particular by application of new physical methods and ways of influence on the processes of synthesis of catalyst and catalytic processes.

One of the efficient physical methods used for synthesis of catalyst is microwave irradiation, capability of which is not fully investigated.

Within the framework of the present project the following tasks will be solved:

  1. With the purpose to sharply decrease time of synthesis, give new selective properties to catalysts during their synthesis, reduce production costs, and improve performance attributes of catalysts, in conditions of influence of external microwave fields the processes of formation and crystallization of high-silica zeolites will be investigated.
  2. For catalytic conversion of methanol and other hydrocarbons into high octane petrol, hexa- and tetra methylbenzene, olefins and ethers, the modification of zeolite catalysts by rare-earth metals and metals of 2, 5, 6 groups of the Periodic Table in the conditions of imposition of microwave fields and re-structuring of zeolites by electron beam irradiation, will be investigated and their influence on the process of catalytic conversion of methanol will be studied.

Within the framework of the present project, the choice of a general direction of investigations, the stages and sequence of works execution are firmly proved by the results of series of preliminary experiments, which were conducted by a group of scientist. The group includes specialists in catalysis, chemical and physical - chemical analysis, zeolite synthesis, radio physics, and nuclear physics.

At synthesis of high-silica structures it was noticed that addition of salts of Cu, Ag, Zn, V, Mn, Te, Pd and REM into the reaction mixture prior to stage of synthesis, facilitates formation of catalytically active zeolite structures and more homogeneous distribution of promoting elements in the structure of zeolite.

The microwave treatment of reaction mass not only stimulates the process of formation of the crystallization centers but also, which is most essential sharply reduces zeolite synthesis time. Initiated structural, thermal and diffusion processes, under electrons beam of the linear accelerators LUE-5 and LUE-10 in the energy area of 1 -10 Мэв testify to an opportunity for "activation" of the most catalytically active structure of high silica zeolite with accentuated selective properties.

In preliminary experiments on synthesis of catalysts in the conditions of microwave radiation we have noticed, increase in intensity of lines at small corners, occurrence of triplet at 3.70 - 3.97, shift of some lines of large indexes to the region of small corners, which have served a base for identification of the synthesized products as compounds of ZSM-like structures.

By analysis of results of the check experiments conducted on synthesis of catalysts under the influence of external physical factors, the most perspective and catalytically active forms of catalysts are chosen. The latter were used for investigation of a possibility of transformation of methanol and other elementary hydrocarbons into higher-octane motor fuel, hexa- and tetramethylbenzene (durol) and other aromatic compounds, using the laboratory catalytic device. It is revealed, that at use of a certain type of catalyst and selection of appropriate regimes of catalytic transformation, the transformation of methanol into above-mentioned aromatic hydrocarbons in one stage with high yield of target products is possible.

The works executed within the frame of this project will make possible to propose a cost effective and accelerated method of synthesis of zeolite catalytic systems, as well as energy effective and selective method of methanol transformation into aromatic hydrocarbons.

The specialists with experience in the area of nuclear physics, radio physicists, and chemists worked for on weapon development will participate in the project works. The work will make possible them to entirely switch to the peaceful scientific subjects.

At the execution of work it will be necessary to make a request to foreign collaborators and ask for help on the detailed investigation of structure of the obtained zeolites and on analysis of the full spectrum of products of the catalytic conversion of methanol.