Special Issue "Materials for Clean Processes in Energy"

A special issue of Materials (ISSN 1996-1944). This special issue belongs to the section "Energy Materials".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 June 2020.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Simona Bennici
Website
Guest Editor
Institut de Science des Matériaux de Mulhouse, IS2M - CNRS UMR 7361 - UHA, 3 rue Alfred Werner, 68093, Mulhouse Cedex, France
Interests: catalysis; thermal analysis; thermochemical heat storage; biosourced Products valorisation; depollution; clean processes
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Special Issue Information

Dear colleagues,

There is an overwhelming compulsion in the development of new materials aiming to diminish the environmental footprint of processes in the energy field and to adapt their properties to target applications. Generally, materials developed for specific applications are reconverted for other uses and slightly modified to reach higher performances. A different approach is to create new and target materials for a definite application by varying the synthesis and activation conditions and methodology during preparation. This way, numerous new materials have recently been developed for specific applications in the field of energy. Thanks to the advances in material science, several energy storage and production processes have been transformed/reconverted into clean processes (biofuel industry, fatal energy recovery, renewable energy storage, etc.).

The topic of this Special Issue is the implementation of new materials in clean processes in the energy field:

  • Biosourced material for energy recovery (biofuel, chars, etc.);
  • Materials and composites for energy storage (PCM, salt hydrate, zeolites, etc.);
  • Materials and catalytic materials for energy related processes (biofuels production and purification, biogas purification, etc.).

Dr. Mejdi Jeguirim
Dr. Simona Bennici
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Biofuels
  • Biomass precursors for electrochemical electrodes
  • Biosorbents for energy accumulators
  • Synthetic graphite for fuel cell and batteries
  • Activation
  • Catalysis
  • Chars
  • Purification of biogas and biofuel.

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Samples of Ba1−xSrxCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ, 0 < x < 0.1, with Improved Chemical Stability in CO2-H2 Gas-Involving Atmospheres as Potential Electrolytes for a Proton Ceramic Fuel Cell
Materials 2020, 13(8), 1874; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma13081874 - 16 Apr 2020
Abstract
Comparative studies were performed on variations in the ABO3 perovskite structure, chemical stability in a CO2-H2 gas atmosphere, and electrical conductivity measurements in air, hydrogen, and humidity-involving gas atmospheres of monophase orthorhombic Ba1−xSrxCe0.9Y [...] Read more.
Comparative studies were performed on variations in the ABO3 perovskite structure, chemical stability in a CO2-H2 gas atmosphere, and electrical conductivity measurements in air, hydrogen, and humidity-involving gas atmospheres of monophase orthorhombic Ba1−xSrxCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ samples, where 0 < x < 0.1. The substitution of strontium with barium resulting in Ba1−xSrxCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ led to an increase in the specific free volume and global instability index when compared to BaCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ. Reductions in the tolerance factor and cell volume were found with increases in the value of x in Ba1−xSrxCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ. Based on the thermogravimetric studies performed for Ba1−xSrxCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ, where 0 < x < 0.1, it was found that modified samples of this type exhibited superior chemical resistance in a CO2 gas atmosphere when compared to BaCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ. The application of broadband impedance spectroscopy enabled the determination of the bulk and grain boundary conductivity of Ba1−xSrxCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ samples within the temperature range 25–730 °C. It was found that Ba0.98Sr0.02Ce0.9Y0.1O3−δ exhibited a slightly higher grain interior and grain boundary conductivity when compared to BaCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ. The Ba0.95Sr0.05Ce0.9Y0.1O3−δ sample also exhibited improved electrical conductivity in hydrogen gas atmospheres or atmospheres involving humidity. The greater chemical resistance of Ba1−xSrxCe0.9Y0.1O3−δ, where x = 0.02 or 0.05, in a CO2 gas atmosphere is desirable for application in proton ceramic fuel cells supplied by rich hydrogen processing gases. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Materials for Clean Processes in Energy)
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Open AccessArticle
Evaluation of a Catalyst Durability in Absence and Presence of Toluene Impurity: Case of the Material Co2Ni2Mg2Al2 Mixed Oxide Prepared by Hydrotalcite Route in Methane Dry Reforming to Produce Energy
Materials 2019, 12(9), 1362; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma12091362 - 26 Apr 2019
Abstract
Ni, Co, Mg, and Al mixed-oxide solids, synthesized via the hydrotalcite route, were investigated in previous works toward the dry reforming of methane for hydrogen production. The oxide Co2Ni2Mg2Al2 calcined at 800 °C, Co2Ni [...] Read more.
Ni, Co, Mg, and Al mixed-oxide solids, synthesized via the hydrotalcite route, were investigated in previous works toward the dry reforming of methane for hydrogen production. The oxide Co2Ni2Mg2Al2 calcined at 800 °C, Co2Ni2Mg2Al2800, showed the highest catalytic activity in the studied series, which was ascribable to an interaction between Ni and Co, which is optimal for this Co/Ni ratio. In the present study, Co2Ni2Mg2Al2800 was compared to a commercial catalyst widely used in the industry, Ni(50%)/Al2O3, and showed better activity despite its lower number of active sites, as well as lower amounts of carbon on its surface, i.e. less deactivation. In addition to this, Co2Ni2Mg2Al2800 showed stability for 20 h under stream during the dry reforming of methane. This good durability is attributed to a periodic cycle of carbon deposition and removal as well as to the strong interaction between Ni and Co, preventing the deactivation of the catalyst. The evaluation of the catalytic performances in the presence of toluene, which is an impurity that exists in biogas, is also a part of this work. In the presence of toluene, the catalytic activity of Co2Ni2Mg2Al2800 decreases, and higher carbon formation on the catalyst surface is detected. Toluene adsorption on catalytic sites, side reactions performed by toluene, and the competition between toluene and methane in the reaction with carbon dioxide are the main reasons for such results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Materials for Clean Processes in Energy)
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Open AccessArticle
Activated Carbon/Transition Metal (Ni, In, Cu) Hexacyanoferrate Nanocomposites for Cesium Adsorption
Materials 2019, 12(8), 1253; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma12081253 - 16 Apr 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
Transition metal hexacyanoferrate/microporous activated carbon composites were obtained using a simple successive impregnation approach. The effect of metal type (nickel, indium, or copper), and the carbon oxidation on the composite characteristics (porosity, metal structure, and particle size), as well as on the removal [...] Read more.
Transition metal hexacyanoferrate/microporous activated carbon composites were obtained using a simple successive impregnation approach. The effect of metal type (nickel, indium, or copper), and the carbon oxidation on the composite characteristics (porosity, metal structure, and particle size), as well as on the removal efficiency of cesium from aqueous solution was investigated. Successful formation of the desired metal hexacyanoferrate phase was achieved and the size of the metallic nanoparticles and their dispersion in the carbon network was found to depend on the metal type, with the indium and nickel-based materials exhibiting the smallest particle size distribution (< 10 nm). Adsorption tests performed under batch conditions demonstrate that the copper hexacyanoferrate/activated carbon composite present the highest cesium removal capacity from aqueous solution (74.7 mg·g−1) among the three studied metal-based nanocomposites. The carbon oxidation treatment leads to the increase in the number of functional groups to the detriment of the porosity but allows for an improvement in the Cs adsorption capacity. This indicates that the Cs adsorption process is governed by the carbon surface chemistry and not its porosity. Moreover, combining oxidized carbon support with copper hexacyanoferrate induces the highest cesium adsorption capacity (101.5 mg·g−1). This could be related to synergistic effects through two absorption mechanisms, i.e., a cation exchange mechanism of Cs with the metallic hexacyanoferrate phase and Cs adsorption via carbon oxygen surface groups, as demonstrated using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) analyses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Materials for Clean Processes in Energy)
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Open AccessArticle
Binary Oxides Prepared by Microwave-Assisted Solution Combustion: Synthesis, Characterization and Catalytic Activity
Materials 2019, 12(6), 910; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma12060910 - 19 Mar 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Three different alumina-based Ni, Cu, Co oxide catalysts with metal loading of 10 wt %, and labeled 10Ni–Al, 10Co–Al and 10Cu–Al, were prepared by microwave-assisted solution combustion. Their morphological, structural and surface properties were deeply investigated by complementary physico-chemical techniques. Finally, the three [...] Read more.
Three different alumina-based Ni, Cu, Co oxide catalysts with metal loading of 10 wt %, and labeled 10Ni–Al, 10Co–Al and 10Cu–Al, were prepared by microwave-assisted solution combustion. Their morphological, structural and surface properties were deeply investigated by complementary physico-chemical techniques. Finally, the three materials were tested in CO oxidation used as test reaction for comparing their catalytic performance. The 10Cu–Al catalyst was constituted of copper oxide phase, while the 10Ni–Al and 10Co–Al catalysts showed the presence of “spinels” phases on the surface. The well-crystallized copper oxide phase in the 10Cu–Al catalyst, obtained by microwave synthesis, allowed for obtaining very high catalytic activity. With a CO conversion of 100% at 225 °C, the copper containing catalyst showed a much higher activity than that usually measured for catalytic materials of similar composition, thus representing a promising alternative for oxidation processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Materials for Clean Processes in Energy)
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Open AccessArticle
Tomato-Processing By-Product Combustion: Thermal and Kinetic Analyses
Materials 2019, 12(4), 553; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma12040553 - 13 Feb 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
This paper is part of a sustainable development approach, the aim being to develop a thermochemical energy recovery path while reducing the amount of tomato waste issued from agro-industrial units. The thermal process may contribute to an environmentally friendly management and help tomato [...] Read more.
This paper is part of a sustainable development approach, the aim being to develop a thermochemical energy recovery path while reducing the amount of tomato waste issued from agro-industrial units. The thermal process may contribute to an environmentally friendly management and help tomato processing industries creating new economic profitable circuits in an increasingly competitive context. The adopted approach was to follow the operating conditions needed for a complete thermal degradation through a thermal and kinetic analyses. The results of the tomato waste characterization confirmed their suitability to a thermochemical processing with high volatiles and fixed carbon and interesting high heating values comparable to sawdust biomass. We were able to isolate of the decomposition domains and extract kinetic parameters. Three kinetic models were applied; Flynn–Wall–Ozawa (FWO) simulated the best the combustion process. Calculated curves were validated by the first order (n = 1) model except for the slow heating rate of 5 °C/min which was fitted by the contracted cylinder model. The conclusions of this paper could help in optimizing the combustion process in order to achieve high energy recovery from tomato residues. Obtained kinetic data would help in the design of combustion reactors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Materials for Clean Processes in Energy)
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Review

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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Inorganic and Hybrid (Organic–Inorganic) Lamellar Materials for Heavy Metals and Radionuclides Capture in Energy Wastes Management—A Review
Materials 2019, 12(9), 1399; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma12091399 - 29 Apr 2019
Cited by 7
Abstract
The energy industry (nuclear, battery, mining industries, etc.) produces a large quantity of hazardous effluents that may contain radionuclides (137Cs and 90Sr in particular) and heavy metals. One of the hardest tasks of environmental safety and sustainable development is the [...] Read more.
The energy industry (nuclear, battery, mining industries, etc.) produces a large quantity of hazardous effluents that may contain radionuclides (137Cs and 90Sr in particular) and heavy metals. One of the hardest tasks of environmental safety and sustainable development is the purification of wastewater holding these pollutants. Adsorption is one of the most powerful methods for extracting toxic compounds from wastewater. This study reviews the usefulness of clay minerals as adsorbent for removing these hazardous elements to clean up energy production processes. Phyllosilicates are able to extract several heavy metals from effluent, as widely examined. A particular focus is given to synthetic phyllosilicates and their abilities to entrap heavy metals with a special attention paid to those synthesized by sol-gel route. Indeed, this method is attractive since it allows the development of organic–inorganic hybrids from organosilanes presenting various functions (amino, thiol, etc.) that can interact with pollutants. Regarding these pollutants, a part of this review focuses on the interaction of lamellar materials (natural and synthetic phyllosilicates as well as layered double hydroxide) with heavy metals and another part deals with the adsorption of specific radionuclides, cesium and strontium. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Materials for Clean Processes in Energy)
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