Discipline: Chemistry and Chemical Sciences
Subcategory: Chemical/Bimolecular/Process Engineering
Room: Exhibit Hall A
Juan Carlos Vazquez Lopez - University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras Campus
Co-Author(s): Jean L. Lozada Dominguez, University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras Campus
The catalytic activity of iron oxide nanoparticles (FeNPs) is currently a topic of promising potential as a result of the stability, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness of these nanomaterials. A prime example of this is the improvement of biocrude yield through hydrothermal liquefaction (HTL) using macroalgae as a starting biomass, namely Osmundaria, Ulva, and Sargassum. Contemplating to prove said utility, three types of FeNPs were synthesized via two co-precipitation methods to determine and compare both their catalytic efficiency and stability in a HTL reactor. Bare and k-carrageenan coated nanoparticles (C-FeNPs) were produced through a reduction with sodium hydroxide, while oleic acid coated nanoparticles (O-FeNPs) were prepared utilizing ammonium hydroxide as the reducing agent. Analysis through electron dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDS) revealed high amounts of oxygen, iron (II) and iron (III) on all samples. In addition to these, the presence of carbon was detected for O-FeNPs, while carbon and sulfur were displayed for the C-FeNPs. Future studies with Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and x-ray diffraction spectroscopy (XRD) are expected to confirm this composition, as well as shedding light on the morphology of these nanomaterials. Moreover, experimentation is undergoing to immobilize an enzyme on the surface of the O-FeNPs as a way to break the glycosidic bonds on the macroalgae and enabling the increase of the biocrude yield. Enzyme presence on iron oxide nanoparticles (E-FeNPs) is to be determined through the spectroscopic techniques mentioned above, as well as performing a dinitrosalicylic acid (DNS) method to verify its activity. Furthermore, a study will be performed utilizing the anthrone method as a means to identify total carbohydrate content. The different iron species nanoparticles (FeNPs, C-FeNPs, O-FeNPs and E- FeNPs) will be used to study the change in the quality and yield of the bio-oil from the macroalgae.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): The project is supported by NSF-CREST Center for Innovation, Research and Education in Environmental Nanotechnology grant # HRD-1736093
Faculty Advisor: Dr. Liz Diaz Vazquez, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: During the course of the investigation, synthesis of different iron oxide nanoparticles, specifically magnetite, was undertaken. Bare and k-carrageenan coated magnetite nanoparticles were prepared by reduction with sodium hydroxide, while oleic acid coated magnetite nanoparticles were reduced with ammonium hydroxide. These samples were tested in the production of biocrude through a hydrothermal liquefaction reactor using macroalgae as the starting biomass and their catalytic efficiency was measured after multiple runs.