Steel Mesh Based Catalyst With Superior Mechanical Stability / Magnetic Separability


Reference #: 01440

The University of South Carolina is offering licensing opportunities for Steel mesh-based catalysts with superior mechanical stability and magnetic separability.


Torrefaction is a thermal process to convert biomass into a coal-like material, which has better fuel characteristics than the original biomass.

During the torrefaction of biomass, large amounts of toxic CO can be produced (up to 3-4vol%). A steel mesh-based catalyst can be utilized to form CO2 and H2 (a value-added product) from CO and H2O in addition to oxidizing CO with O2. The catalyst can be separated magnetically from the biomass after reaction and can be reused multiple times.


Invention Description:

This catalyst is based on a steel mesh core, which can be formed in a variety of shapes. By inserting a magnetic stainless-steel mesh core into catalyst pellets, it enables the entire pellet to be readily magnetically separable as well as imparting extra mechanical strength to the pellet itself, which allows for easy separation from a process stream. In combination with continuous biomass torrefaction, the catalyst reduces toxic emissions and produces hydrogen gas, which can be burned at the facility to generate heat. After the biomass torrefaction, the catalyst can be easily separated from the biomass using a magnet and subsequently reused in the process.

Potential Applications:

The catalyst can be added directly to the biomass stream to perform the reaction in the torrefaction reactor without the need for a heated exhaust gas treatment unit after the torrefaction reactor, resulting in a cost savings.

Advantages and Benefits:

This catalyst can be added directly to the biomass without the need for additional exhaust treatment infrastructure. It is easily separable as it can be readily separated via the use of a magnet. This catalyst oxidizes carbon monoxide while producing value added hydrogen gas. These factors allow for a less expensive torrefaction facility while simultaneously generating hydrogen which can be used for energy or the production of liquid fuels as well as ensuring the process can meet current emissions standards.

Patent Information:
Title App Type Country Serial No. Patent No. File Date Issued Date Expire Date Patent Status
Steel Mesh Based Catalyst with Superior Mechanical Stability / Magnetic Separability PCT United States PCT/US2020/63233   12/4/2020     Filed
Steel Mesh Based Catalyst with Superior Mechanical Stability / Magnetic Separability Nationalized PCT PCT 17/781,780   6/2/2022     Filed
For Information, Contact:
Technology Commercialization
University of South Carolina
Jochen Lauterbach
Michael Royko
Biomass Torrefaction
Biomass Upgrading
Carbon Monoxide Emissions
Heterogeneous Catalysis
Magnetic Catalyst
Magnetic Separability
Water-Gas Shift
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