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This New Material Can Capture Pollutants And Convert Them Into Useful Industrial Chemicals

New material turns toxic air pollutants into industrial chemicals

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Industrial chemicals
The metal-organic framework (MOF) material can convert pollutants into industrial chemicals. Pixabay

An international team of scientists has developed a new material that can capture a toxic pollutant produced by burning fossil fuels and convert it into useful industrial chemicals using only water and air.

The technology could lead to air pollution control and help remedy the negative impact nitrogen dioxide has on the environment.

The metal-organic framework (MOF) material provides a selective, fully reversible and repeatable capability to capture nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a toxic air pollutant produced particularly by diesel and bio-fuel use, said the study published in the journal Nature Chemistry.

The NO2 can then be easily converted into nitric acid, a multi-billion dollar industry with uses including, agricultural fertiliser for crops; rocket propellant and nylon.

MOFs are tiny three-dimensional structures which are porous and can trap gasses inside, acting like cages.

“This is the first MOF to both capture and convert a toxic, gaseous air pollutant into a useful industrial commodity,” said Sihai Yang, a lead author and a senior lecturer at University of Manchester in Britain.

Pollutants into industrial chemicals
MOFs are tiny three-dimensional structures which can trap gasses inside and convert them into idustrial chemicals. Pixabay

“It is also interesting that the highest rate of nitrogen dioxide uptake by this MOF occurs at around 45 degrees Centigrade, which is about the temperature of automobile exhausts.”

The material, named MFM-520, can capture nitrogen dioxide at ambient pressures and temperatures — even at low concentrations and during flow — in the presence of moisture, sulfur dioxide and carbon dioxide, said the study.

The highly efficient mechanism in this new MOF was characterised by researchers using neutron scattering and synchrotron X-ray diffraction at the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Berkeley National Laboratory, respectively.

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The team also used the National Service for Electron Paramagnetic Resonance Spectroscopy at Manchester to study the mechanism of adsorption of nitrogen dioxide in MFM-520.

“The global market for nitric acid in 2016 was $2.5 billion, so there is a lot of potential for manufacturers of this MOF technology to recoup their costs and profit from the resulting nitric acid production. Especially since the only additives required are water and air,” Martin Schroder, Professor at University of Manchester. (IANS)

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The Challenges, Growth and Prospects of Olive Oil Industry in India

Discussing the growth, prospects of olive oil in India

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Olive oil
For the first time in the country, experts in India will hold a panel discussion about the olive oil industry. Pixabay

BY PUJA GUPTA

For the first time in the country, experts in India will hold a panel discussion on the challenges, growth and prospects of the olive oil industry on the 13th of December at PHD Chamber of Commerce & Industry.

Rahul Upadhyay, President and Akshay Modi, Vice-President at The Indian Olive Association (IOA) will be hosting the Annual Public at the Lakshmipat Singhania Auditorium. The session will discuss the transition of olive oil from being a foreign oil to a homegrown oil with which the citizens of India can now reckon with.

The panel moderated by senior food and travel writer Rupali Dean will spearhead the session on Olive Oil In India-2.0. The panel of speakers will include noted restaurateurs, chefs, nutritionists, food researchers and biologists, entrepreneurs, retailers, food, health and fitness experts.

Olive oil india
The Indian Olive Association focuses on the problems confronting the emerging sector of olive oil and table olives in India. Pixabay

Upadhyay said, “The Indian Olive Association focuses on the problems confronting the emerging sector of olive oil and table olives in India. With Annual Public Session, we attempt to bring together the doyens from the food and health industry to discuss the problems and offer solutions that will accelerate the growth of olive oil in India.”

Akshay Modi, Vice-President at The Indian Olive Association (IOA). “The Annual Public Session is a platform that brings together all the diverse stakeholders to speak a unified voice for the greater good of the category of olive oil in India.”

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The Indian Olive Association (IOA), the national apex association of olive oil producers, growers, distributors, importers, users and consumers in India works to promote consumption and expand the market for olive oil and table olives. The association focuses on the problems confronting this emerging sector in India. Macro-economic factors like GST, Import Duty and issues with respect to the import of both table olives and olive oil are taken up by IOA with multiple authorities to streamline the import process and ensure a steady growth for this category. (IANS)