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Experimental and theoretical study of microwave enhanced catalytic hydrodesulfurization of thiophene in a continuous-flow reactor

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Abstract

Hydrodesulfurization (HDS) of thiophene, as a gasoline model oil, over an industrial Ni-Mo/Al2O3 catalyst was investigated in a continuous system under microwave irradiation. The HDS efficiency was much higher (5%–14%) under microwave irradiation than conventional heating. It was proved that the reaction was enhanced by both microwave thermal and non-thermal effects. Microwave selective heating caused hot spots inside the catalyst, thus improved the reaction rate. From the analysis of the non-thermal effect, the molecular collisions were significantly increased under microwave irradiation. However, instead of being reduced, the apparent activation energy increased. This may be due to the microwave treatment hindering the adsorption though upright S-bind (η1) and enhancing the parallel adsorption (η5), both adsorptions were considered to favor to the direct desulfurization route and the hydrogenation route respectively. Therefore, the HDS process was considered to proceed along the hydrogenation route under microwave irradiation.

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Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 21476258).

Author information

Correspondence to Hui Shang or Jiawei Wang.

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Shang, H., Ye, P., Yue, Y. et al. Experimental and theoretical study of microwave enhanced catalytic hydrodesulfurization of thiophene in a continuous-flow reactor. Front. Chem. Sci. Eng. 13, 744–758 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11705-019-1839-7

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Keywords

  • thiophene
  • microwave irradiation
  • hydrode-sulfurization
  • non-thermal microwave effect