Hydro Geo Chem, Inc. in Collaboration with Dr. Eric Betterton Receives SBIR Grant

Dec. 22, 2005

Hydro Geo Chem, Inc., in collaboration with University of Arizona SBRP investigator Dr. Eric Betterton, has received a Phase 1 SBIR (Small Business Innovation Research) Grant. The title of the grant is “Catalyzed Redox Destruction of Halogenated Organic Vapors.” The grant has been funded from July 11, 2005 to December 31, 2005.

The first goal of this research project is to demonstrate the practical applicability of catalytic reactors for treating gas-phase VOCs under redox conditions. To accomplish this goal, emphasis will be placed on: (1) identification and use of inexpensive reductants, such as natural gas, methane, and propane to replace more expensive hydrogen gas, (2) optimization of reactor scale-up and heating requirements, (3) design and operation of a hydrochloric acid by-product scrubber, (4) identification of major and trace by-products, and (5) demonstration of reactor performance over extended periods of operations at two field sites in the Tucson area, Park-Euclid and Page Ranch.
The second goal of this research project is to gain a more detailed mechanistic understanding of the process that will allow refinements and optimization of the catalytic redox treatment operations in the field. Bench-scale laboratory experiments in support of field operations will be conducted to investigate the utility of the catalytic reactor for treating chlorofluorocarbons, which accompany the chloroform vapor at the Page Ranch site. Bench-scale experiments will also investigate the effects of potential catalyst poisons, particularly sulfur-containing gases.

The researchers will accomplish the above goals through a combination of field-based, pilot-scale trials and bench-scale laboratory experiments. The fundamental studies being performed by Dr. Betterton’s research group (UA SBRP Project 6) will support the fieldwork conducted under the SBIR grant.