Skip to content

Ammonia as Hydrogen Carrier for Transportation; Investigation of the Ammonia Exhaust Gas Fuel Reforming


In this paper we show, for the first time, the feasibility of ammonia exhaust gas reforming as a strategy for hydrogen production used in transportation. The application of the reforming process and the impact of the product on diesel combustion and emissions were evaluated. The research was started with an initial study of ammonia autothermal reforming (NH3 e ATR) that combined selective oxidation of ammonia (into nitrogen and water) and ammonia thermal decomposition over a ruthenium catalyst using air as the oxygen source. The air was later replaced by real diesel engine exhaust gas to provide the oxygen needed for the exothermic reactions to raise the temperature and promote the NH3 decomposition. The main parameters varied in the reforming experiments are O2/NH3 ratios, NH3 concentration in feed gas and gas e hourly e space e velocity (GHSV). The O2/NH3 ratio and NH3 concentration were the key factors that dominated both the hydrogen production and the reforming process efficiencies: by applying an O2/NH3 ratio ranged from 0.04 to 0.175, 2.5e3.2 l/min of gaseous H2 production was achieved using a fixed NH3 feed flow of 3 l/min. The reforming reactor products at different concentrations (H2 and unconverted NH3) were then added into a diesel engine intake. The addition of considerably small amount of carbon e free reformate, i.e. represented by 5% of primary diesel replacement, reduced quite effectively the engine carbon emissions including CO2, CO and total hydrocarbons.

Funding source: The authors would like to thank Johnson Matthey for funding the project and providing the catalysts. The School of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Birmingham (UK) is gratefully acknowledged for the PhD School Scholarship to Mr. Wentao Wang. Engineering and Physical Science Research Council e EPSRC projects (EP/G038139/1) and the Advantage West Midlands and the European Regional Development Fund as part of the Science City Research Alliance Energy Efficiency Project are also acknowledged for supporting the research work.
Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: United Kingdom

Article metrics loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error