ChBE Seminar Series: Efrain Rodriguez

Tuesday, November 1, 2016
11:00 a.m.
Room 2108, Chemical and Nuclear Engineering Building
Dongxia Liu

Efrain Rodriguez
Assistant Professor
Chemistry Dept., University of Maryland

Title: Transition metal oxides for chemical looping reactions

In chemical-looping reactions (CLR), an oxygen storage material (OSM) is used in a closed loop to transport oxygen between two half reactions during either combustion of a fuel or steam reforming. By combusting a hydrocarbon fuel with oxygen from a solid source, the CLR process includes inherent separation of CO
2 from other gases in air and could therefore prove to be greener and more energy efficient than current carbon capture and sequestration technologies. We present some of our research activities aimed at further understanding of the reactions between solid mixed-metal oxides at elevated temperatures with gaseous fuels such as methane. The commercial viability of this technology is currently limited by the ability of OSMs to fully oxidize the hydrocarbon fuel while minimizing side reactions – known as product selectivity. We will present some in situ neutron and X-ray diffraction studies of perovskite-related oxides in order to answer some fundamental thermodynamic and kinetic parameters important CLR.  We try to relate parameters such as the oxidation state of the transition metal, crystal structure, and electronegativity of the metal as descriptors for a good OSM. The ultimate goal is to answer the question: “What makes for a good oxidizer in CLR ?

Short bio:

D. Efrain E. Rodriguez is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Maryland College Park.  Before then Efrain received his Bachelor's in Materials Science and Engineering at MIT in 2003, and then followed up with a PhD in Inorganic Materials at the University of California Santa Barbara.  After three years at the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Efrain joined the faculty at UMD in 2012.  Since then he has established a solid state chemistry laboratory for the preparation of functional inorganic materials including transition metal chalcogenides for superconductivity and magnetism and metal oxides for energy-related applications.

Audience: Public 

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