Natural Catalyst

Reduction of nitrate using natural (bimetallic) catalyst

The contamination of surface water and groundwater by nitrate has gradually increased due to excessive consumption of fertilizer in the world. Nitrate should be removed from our natural and engineered water systems because it can be converted into nitrite which may cause serious diseases to human being such as blue baby, cancer, and hypertension. The catalytic reduction has been developed as a promising method for nitrate removal without the drawbacks of the conventional methods. The catalyst is composed of a noble metal such as Pd and Pt, a promoter metal such as Cu and Sn, and a support such as titania and silicate. Nitrite can be generated as an intermediate product in the catalytic nitrate reduction processes and then it can be converted to both ideal product (nitrogen gas) and to undesirable product (ammonia). Our goals are to develop the economical and eco-friendly natural catalyst and to investigate the nitrate reduction mechanism. Topics of interest are following :

  • Characterization of the natural catalyst using BET, XRD, XPS, TEM, and TPR analysis
  • Investigation different metals and materials to choose proper metal combination and support material for the nitrate reduction
  • Optimization of environmental factors such as metal ratio, hydrogen flow rate, and pH to enhance the nitrate removal efficiency and nitrogen selectivity
  • Verifying the nitrate reduction mechanism using Molecular Dynamics simulation

Global EGRL © 2019

Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering

Nazarbayev University

Qabanbay Batyr ave. 53, Astana