STTR Phase I: Metal Oxide Nanofibers for Filter and Catalyst Support Structures

Period of Performance: 01/01/2007 - 12/31/2007

$150K

Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

MemPro Ceramics Corporation
PO Box 3806
Copper Mountain, CO 80443
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Akron
284 Polsky Building
Akron, OH 44325
Institution POC

Abstract

The Small Business Technology Transfer Research (STTR) Phase I project will intersperse ceramic nanofibers made from a three-step electrospinning/coating/decomposing process into an array of ceramic microfibers for filtering hot gases up to 1800C , while retaining structural integrity. The ceramic nanofibers offer significant improvements in particulate capture efficiency with moderate increases in pressure drop for gas filtration compared to typical monolithic or granular structures. In addition, the high surface area of the nanofibers provides a basis for improved catalyst support structures. In this work, the microfiber-nanofiber media will be constructed, and Pd catalyst material added to the nanofibers. Catalyst performance will then be measured and compared with the perormance of current motor vehicle honeycomb catalyst. Results from this work can be subsequently used to optimize the filter design.The proposed technology will provide a relatively inexpensive method for capturing soot particles and catalyzing harmful emissions such as NOx and CO. These filters may also be combined with the catalytic converters as a single multifunctional unit to save space and weight on the automobile. Other potential applications of ceramic nanofibers with catalysts include hydrogen storage tanks and fuel cells.