Nanofibrous Manganese Dioxide for Volatile Organic CompoundsEPA Contract Number: 68D02027
Title: Nanofibrous Manganese Dioxide for Volatile Organic Compounds
Investigators: Xiao, Danny
Small Business: Inframat Corporation
EPA Contact: Richards, April
Project Period: April 1, 2002 through September 1, 2002
Project Amount: $70,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2002) RFA Text | Recipients Lists
Research Category: Nanotechnology , Air Quality and Air Toxics , SBIR - Air Pollution , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)
Description:The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency seeks innovative nanostructured catalysts for utilization in critically needed volatile organic compound (VOC) treatment devices. Potential success exists by exploiting the unique properties of nanofibrous materials, where the structural scale is reduced to nanometer dimensions. Inframat Corporation proposes to demonstrate the feasibility of using nanofibrous MnO2 "bird's nest" superstructures in air pollution control devices for eliminating VOCs. This program builds on Inframat's preliminary results of nanofibrous MnO2 superstructures for high- quality, economically affordable, high-performance air filtration applications. Experimentally, the program includes: (1) synthesis of nanofibrous MnO2 material; and (2) evaluation of nanofibrous MnO2 in a VOC emission control application. Inframat has teamed with an environmental expert, Professor Shili Liu of the Environmental Research Institute, University of Connecticut, to perform the proposed work.
Inframat has pioneered the development of a unique class of nanofibrous materials that have a "bird's-nest" morphology, consisting of interwoven nanofibers. This open-weave structure provides a superb host where catalysis can occur efficiently while permitting relatively easy flow of the gas stream through the structure. This revolutionary yet simple concept shows the potential importance of nanofibrous catalysts to current environmental needs. Inframat, collaborating with Professor Shili Liu, has performed preliminary research on using nanofibrous MnO2 as a catalyst for eliminating toxic VOCs. Inframat has confirmed that nanofibrous MnO2 effectively converts common VOCs at the ppb concentration at very low temperatures. To ensure an application range of nanofibrous MnO2 in both high and low VOC concentration areas, this project will demonstrate the feasibility of using nanofibrous MnO2 to convert VOCs at ppm as well as ppb levels at low temperatures.
Major commercial uses for nanofibrous MnO2 materials include pollution control devices, VOC emission control devices, advance catalyst, and mitigation of air and water pollutants. Other applications of nanofibrous MnO2 include use in beverages and pharmaceuticals. Reducing highly toxic VOCs and other pollutants found in indoor and outdoor air to the sub-ppb level will enhance quality of life.