Membrane Separation Combined with Catalytic Biomass Gasification to Produce Hydrogen-Rich Gas

Period of Performance: 01/01/2003 - 12/31/2003


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Metcon Industries
4201 Church Road
Mt. Laurel, NJ 08054
Principal Investigator


73214B03-I This project will combine membrane separation technology with the catalytic steam gasification of biomass to allow hydrogen-rich gas to be produced from biomass waste under non-equilibrium conditions. In particular, a gasifier, in which a membrane separator is placed, will be designed, built, and tested. In Phase I, a laser-based metal deposition technique will be used to prepare Pt-and Pd-coated ceramic membranes. A screening device will be built to test the hydrogen permeability of the membrane materials, under gasifer conditions and using synthetic gas mixtures. From these tests, candidate materials will be identified for further testing in Phase II. Phase II will build a gasifier that incorporates the membrane separator. It will be tested for hydrogen separation under actual gasification conditions. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by awardee: Hydrogen-rich gas from biomass waste could be used to run fuel cells. It also could be used in cars or to produce power in a hydrogen-based economy.