A carbon catalyst, prepared either by oxidizing activated carbon with air at 500-700??C or by oxidizing activated carbon with boiling nitric acid followed by heating it to 500-700??C, is the subject of this paper. This catalyst, designated OAC500-700, catalyzes the removal of hydrogen chloride from alkyl halides. Because OAC500-700 retains adsorptive properties of an activated carbon it can be used both to adsorb pollutants from liquid or gaseous streams and to convert them to recyclable products. A highly-developed micropore structure is not required for all uses of activated carbon or a catalyst produced from it. A comparatively inexpensive ($325/ton projected) low surface area (<300 m2/g) carbon has been developed at the Illinois State Geological Survey (ISGS) for cleaning incinerator flue gas. This grade of activated carbon is widely used in Europe for flue gas cleaning and for other applications. Activated carbon adsorbers of some type are required by recently passed U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations for municipal waste combustors to control emission of cadmium, mercury, lead, dioxins, furans and acid gases (U.S. EPA, 1995). Similar regulations are expected for hospital and hazardous waste incinerators. The marketing of less costly activated carbons of the type used widely in Europe is expected in the United States. Low cost OAC500-700 made from less expensive grades of activated carbon may become available for large scale adsorbent/catalyst systems designed to both remove and decompose toxic pollutants found in liquid and gaseous streams, chlorinated organic compounds in particular.
Additional publication details
The potential for increasing the use of catalytic carbons in commercial applications