Preparation of activated carbons from corncob with large specific surface area by a variety of chemical activators and their application in gas storage

Yong Sun, Paul A. Webley

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

133 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Activated carbons were produced from agricultural waste corncob using a variety of different activation strategies and activators. The BET specific surface area and pore volume of the carbons produced by a two-step KOH activation process were 3012m2/g and 1.7cm3/g, respectively. All carbons prepared showed a microporous character, except for that prepared by a one-step phosphorous acid activation which exhibited hysteresis of a mesoporous carbon. The hydrogen adsorption performance of the different carbons was closely investigated. The microporous carbon with the largest BET specific surface area showed H2 adsorption capacities up to 2.0wt% at 77K under 1atm pressure and 0.44wt% at 298K at 5MPa. The adsorption isotherm model based on the Langmuir-Freundlich equation together with Soave-Redlich-Kwong equation of state for determination of the gas phase fugacity provided a satisfactory representation of the high pressure hydrogen data. The parameter representing full coverage of the solid surface from the Langmuir-Freundlich equation is 9.73mmol/g or 2wt% at 298K. The carbon with the largest hydrogen uptake capacity still cannot meet the US DOE target for hydrogen storage of 6wt%. The isosteric heat of adsorption of carbon was 7kJ/mol, typical of a physisorption character and in agreement with literature for the hydrogen-carbon interaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)883-892
Number of pages10
JournalChemical Engineering Journal
Volume162
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2010
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Activated carbon
  • Corncob
  • Hydrogen adsorption

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry (all)
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemical Engineering (all)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

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