Towards Sustainable Ammonia Synthesis Processes
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Abstract: The current industrial ammonia synthesis based on the Haber-Bosch process has a substantial carbon footprint, and an alternative process based on the energy input from sustainable sources, solar or wind, would be highly desirable. Such a process could even open the possibility of using ammonia for chemical energy storage. I will discuss the prospects of a lower temperature and pressure Haber-Bosch process compatible with hydrogen from electrolysis and introduce new insights into promotion of transition metal catalysts. I will also discuss a model to describe direct electrochemical dinitrogen reduction. In particular, I will discuss a Li mediated process, which can now produce ammonia with a more than 80% faradaic efficiency.
Biography: Jens Nørskov received his PhD in physics from the University of Aarhus in 1979. After postdoc positions he joined the Technical University of Denmark as a professor of physics in 1987. In 2010 he became the Leland T. Edwards Professor in the School of Engineering, Stanford University, and in 2018 he returned to the Technical University of Denmark as the Villum Kann Rasumussen professor. He is currently the chairman of the Danish National Research Foundation. His research aims at developing theoretical methods and concepts to understand and predict properties of materials focusing primarily on catalysis and sustainable energy solutions. He has received a number of awards, and holds honorary doctorates at the Technical University of Eindhoven, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and the Technical University of Munich. He is a member of the Royal Danish Academy of Science and Letters, the Danish Academy of Engineering (ATV), Academia Europea, and a foreign member of the US National Academy of Engineering.
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