Targeted Discovery: Small Pore Zeolites for Industrial Applications

Davis, T.; Xie, D.; Zones, S.; Chen, C.Y; Thompson, J.; Lew, C.; Saxton, R.

Chevron Energy Technology Co., Richmond, CA, USA

Small-pore zeolites show unique functionality in industrial applications including small-molecule gas separations and selective catalytic reduction (SCR) of NOx. As an example, Chevron’s SSZ-13 and SSZ-39 small-pore zeolites continue to serve as catalysts in mobile exhaust clean-up applications worldwide. Driven by tightening air quality regulations and demands for improved separation technology, researchers are challenged to discover new small-pore zeolites with novel structures and broader composition range. Accelerated by molecular modeling and structural analysis techniques, our research program at Chevron has recently discovered more than a dozen novel small-pore zeolites.

Chevron’s synthetic methodology from conception to realization of novel zeolite structures will be presented during the first part of this presentation. Subsequently, two applications for these novel zeolites will be considered: 1) light gas separation and 2) methanol conversion. It will be shown that the exemplified separations are critical processes in chemical plants and provide a low-cost alternative for recovering high purity products. In consideration of methanol conversion chemistry, small-pore zeolites with extraordinarily high ethylene selectivity will be presented.