The microreactors technology has gained importance and great interest in the world research in different areas, from energy production to the development of new catalysts and chemical processes. These devices have a wide range of applications and due to its reduced dimensions offer high heat and mass transfer rates, and are capable to produce compounds with high efficiency. This technology has created opportunities to development of miniaturized chemical plants allowing it to integrate various processes. The proposed study will use the technology of Rapid Prototyping (DMLS) Direct Metal Laser Sintering to construct microchannels to compose a microreactor for hydrogen production from ethanol steam reforming, using catalysts deposited directly over the microchannel surface. The objective is to investigate and evaluate the potential of DMLS to manufacturing such devices, as well as the composition of catalysts and operating conditions that result in a better reaction performance. In the methodology of microchannels construction parameters like scan speed, laser power and hatch spacing will be tested to obtain structures with a morphology and porosity favorable for heterogeneous gas phase reactions. Washcoating and wet impregnation will be used to deposit the catalysts and experiments to define the maximum hydrogen production will be realized. The results of this study will lead a methodology to obtain structures containing microchannels quickly and accurately. In addition, the project follows the recent advances in microtechnology reaction adopted by many research centers and industrial sectors. At the same time, it promotes the consolidation of a multidisciplinary team able to find solutions to current challenges, especially as regards the efficient use of energy and natural resources.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: