FASTCARD - FAST industrialisation by CAtalysts Research and Development

Interview: Margarita Rekhtina

Margarita Rekhtina,
Novosibirsk State University
Ph.D. student, topic of studies «Influence of modifying additives on stability and activity of Ni-based catalyst for bio-oil hydrotreatment». Her supervisor is Ph.D. Mariya Bykova. The study is carried out within the FASTCARD work package WP3 Hydrotreating for the partner Boreskov Institute of Catalysis, Siberian Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences.

- Why did you choose to work within the area of biofuels and renewable energy?
- Nowadays humanity is faced unavoidable depletion of fossil fuel reserves due to constantly growing energy demands. Biofuels seem to be a feasible substitute for traditional fuels due to their abundance and renewability. Nonetheless there are still a lot of problems in biomass processing. My area of research touches upon the development of catalysts for pyrolysis oil upgrading into valuable compounds, materials and fuels. And I find my studies really interesting and important.

- How does your study relate to the aims of FASTCARD?
- Optimization of supported Ni-based catalysts to be used in bio-oil stabilization is one of essential targets of the FASTCARD project. My research activities are close to this target and they are mainly focused on modification of state-of-art Ni-based catalysts by different additives to improve catalysts stability and activity in pyrolysis oil hydrotreatment.

- Please explain your approach and the methods/instrumentation/tools you use to obtain your goals.
- ICP-OES, TPR, CO and H2 chemisorption, BET, XRD, XPS, HRTEM techniques are used for characterization of fresh catalysts. Catalytic activity and stability are tested using different types of feedstock (model compounds like guaiacol, furfural, bio-oil, acetic acid and real feed - pyrolysis oil) in batch and continuous flow modes. For investigation of spent samples ICP-OES, XRD, HRTEM, CO chemisorption, HCNS-O elemental analysis, TGA are used. Characterization of reaction products is performed by GC-FID, GC-MS, HCNS-O elemental analysis, Karl Fisher titration and CCR techniques.

- Interests beside your study?
- I really enjoy going in for sports at my free time. I'm really fond of swimming and dancing.



Published January 11, 2016

This project has received funding from the European Union's FP7 research and Innovation programme under GA. No. 604277