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Published: Kem. Ind. 62 (1-2) (2013) 13–18
Paper reference number: KUI-12/2012
Paper type: Professional paper
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Application of Primary Abatement Technology for Reduction of N2O Emmision in Petrokemija Nitric Acid Production

N. Zečević and L. Ćosić


Industrial nitric acid production by oxidation of gaseous ammonia with Ostwald procedure produces an unwanted by-product – colorless nitrous oxide, N2O. As emission of N2O represents a very serious problem due of its huge contribution to global warming, certain measures focused on its maximum reduction should be undertaken. Minimization of N2O emission in nitric acid production can be achieved in different parts of the process flow, depending on the applied available technologies. For the abatement of N2O emissions in Petrokemija's nitric acid production processes from the list of the best available technologies chosen were primary and secondary abatement technologies. The mentioned ensures reduction of N2O by use of improved selective heterogeneous catalysts in the step of gaseous ammonia oxidation. Precious metals in the shape of gauzes are used as selective heterogeneous catalyst in primary technology, while in the case of secondary technology the Fe2O3 catalyst on Al2O3 support in the shape of spherical pellets is chosen. Shown is the application of primary technology for the abatement of N2O in both nitric acid production facilities and their comparison with classical heterogeneous catalyst and preparation for the installation of secondary selective catalyst. N2O emissions with the application of primary technology in both production facilities were reduced from 12 kg of N2O to 7 kg of N2O per ton of pure HNO3. With the primary reduction in N2O emissions the foundation was established for further reduction with the secondary technology to the final value of 0.7 kg of N2O per ton of pure HNO3, which represents mass concentration in the tail gas below 200 mg m–3 (at n. c.). With the applied technologies for the abatement of N2O emissions in Petrokemija's nitric acid production the future prescribed emission limit value will be satisfied.

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nitric acid, nitrous oxide N2O, emission