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Emission control catalyst

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  • Emission control catalysts, introduced in the 1970s, are now used on all types of internal combustion engines, as well as in a number of stationary applications. The catalytic converter is widely used as an emissions control unit in automobiles and some industries. It uses one or more catalysts such platinum, palladium and rhodium to burn off many impurities in exhaust fumes.
  • To work effectively, the converter needs to reach a temperature of 300 degree Fahrenheit (149 degrees celsius) or more. At that temperature, the catalysts begin to burn hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and nitrogen, turning them into carbon dioxide (CO2) and water vapour. Most automative catalytic converters are not bigger than a shoebox, but all have the same goal: reduce harmful emissions.
  • Oxidation catalysts have been commercialized in the USA in the mid-1970s (first commercial application in model year 1975 cars) to control emissions of CO and HC from spark ignited (SI) gasoline engine applications. Three-way catalyst technology, introduced in the 1980s, made it also possible to control NOx emissions from SI engines at levels that are significantly lower than NOx emissions from diesel engines.
  • In emission control catalysis, solid catalysts are used to catalyze gas phase reactions. The catalytic effect and the observed reaction rates are maximized by providing good contact between the gas phase and the solid catalyst.
  • Catalytic reactors for emission control from internal combustion engines are known as "catalytic converters". The term "catalyst" is also frequently used as a synonym for the catalytic converter. Other terms for catalytic converters, which should be generally avoided, include such names as exhaust purifier, catalytic purifier, exhaust scrubber or PTX.
  • Catalytic emission control systems, used on passenger cars since 1975, have played a key role in substantially reducing exhaust pollutants from motor vehicles. Exhaust emission control is influenced not only by the emission control system, but by engine design and fuel quality as well. Sulfur in gasoline inhibits the emission control performance of catalyst technology. A variety of factors influence the degree of this impact and the extent to which it is reversible.
  • These factors include the sulfur level in the gasoline, the catalyst composition, the catalyst design, the catalyst location, the type and control of fuel metering, the engine calibration, and the manner in which the vehicle is operated.
  • MECA recommends changing the commercial gasoline fuel specification for sulfur to a level which will beneficially effect the performance of past, current and future emission control.
  • The global market in emission control catalysts is set to grow exponentially as passenger car sales expand over the next five years.
  • GIA announces the release of a comprehensive global report on Emission Control Catalysts markets. The global market for emission control catalysts is forecast to exceed US$7.0 billion by the year 2015.
  • The world market for emission control catalysts is projected to reach US$7.7 billion by the year 2017, propelled by stringent emission control standards being enacted in both developed and developing nations.

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