Nickel Poisoning of a Cracking Catalyst Unravelled by Single-Particle X-ray Fluorescence-Diffraction-Absorption Tomography

Marianna Gambino, Martin Veselý, Matthias Filez, Ramon Oord, Dario Ferreira Sanchez, Daniel Grolimund, Nikolai Nesterenko, Delphine Minoux, Marianne Maquet, Florian Meirer*, Bert M. Weckhuysen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Ni contamination from crude oil in the fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) process is one of the primary sources of catalyst deactivation, thereby promoting dehydrogenation–hydrogenation and speeding up coke growth. Herein, single-particle X-ray fluorescence, diffraction and absorption (μXRF-μXRD-μXAS) tomography is used in combination with confocal fluorescence microscopy (CFM) after thiophene staining to spatially resolve Ni interaction with catalyst components and study zeolite degradation, including the processes of dealumination and Brønsted acid sites distribution changes. The comparison between a Ni-lean particle, exposed to hydrotreated feedstock, and a Ni-rich one, exposed to non-hydrotreated feedstock, reveals a preferential interaction of Ni, found in co-localization with Fe, with the γ-Al2O3 matrix, leading to the formation of spinel-type hotspots. Although both particles show similar surface zeolite degradation, the Ni-rich particle displays higher dealumination and a clear Brønsted acidity drop.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3922-3927
Number of pages6
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Volume59
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Mar 2020

Keywords

  • catalyst deactivation
  • fluid catalytic cracking (FCC)
  • heterogeneous catalysis
  • X-ray microscopy
  • zeolites

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