Sana Raoof, left, 17, of Muttontown, N.Y., Yi-Han Su, 17, center, of Chinese Taipei and Natalie Saranga Omattage, right, 17, of Cleveland, Miss., pose after receiving top honors at the 2008 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Atlanta, Friday, May 16, 2008.
Yesterday, Yi-Han Su was named one of three winners of the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award at ISEF 2008, for her project on “Efficient Hydrogen Production Using Cu-Zn-Al Catalysts Prepared by Homogeneous Precipitation Method.” Below the fold I’ll show you what a winning display looks like and I’ll share her abstract.
Here’s the abstract: “In industry, high-activity catalyst is desirable for methanol reforming reaction in order to generate hydrogen efficiently. In the project, multi-composition Cu-Zn-Al catalyst was synthesized by homogeneous precipitation (HP) method with urea treatment. In comparison with those obtained from conventional co-precipitation method, our technique offers an opportunity to improve the homogeneity of metal mixing and to increase the surface area of catalysts. By adjusting urea concentration, water amount, reaction temperature and time, various hydrotalcite-like compounds are obtained. The optimized catalysts having flower-like morphology exhibited high surface area (78.5 m2/g, as determined by Brunaer-Emmett-Teller method), and a lower reduction temperature. The HP-method derived Cu-Zn-Al catalyst exhibited higher methanol conversion, hydrogen production rate, and CO2-selectivity under methanol reforming reaction at 523K compared with those derived by co-precipitation method. To further improve the catalytic performance of the Cu-Zn-Al, Ce and Zr were employed to modify the support. The Ce/Zr-modified catalysts did show higher activity as evidence by a 20K lower reduction temperature and more than 85% of methanol coversion. Our method can be generalized for the synthesis of other multi-composition materials with high homogeneity.”