Natürliche Ressourcen und Schadstoffe  
Sources, Transport & Assessment of Air Pollutants
Sustainable Mobility and Transport
Sustainable Production
Exhaust Gas Treatment
Impacts of Pollutants on Engineered Systems

Exhaust Gas Treatment

This module focuses on the understanding and development of present and potential technologies for the abatement and control of chemical and particulate pollutants. These include automotive catalysts and particulate filters for the abatement of pollutants and soot particles, functional textiles for the abatement of odours, and novel filtration techniques to investigate the impact of nanoparticle exposure, fate and transport on environment and health.
The research activity spans from the design of materials at the nano-scale to the development of real-world solutions for the control of emission of pollutants.
The Module is organized in three Topics.

Catalytic Materials

Research on catalytic materials embraces activities related to

  • optimization of both conventional and novel formulations (i.e. perovskite-type oxides) for the use in natural gas fuelled vehicles
  • the mechanisms and the chemistry of methane on catalytic surfaces
  • application of wash coats on substrates (i.e. monoliths and ceramic foams)

aiming at designing novel washcoats demonstrating higher efficiency and stability. This is achieved through the understanding of mechanisms and of the catalyst structure. Both research on mechanisms and structure should add insight into the aging processes affecting catalytic performance and provide a base for improvement.
The scientific approach is based on the combination of methods spanning from lab-scale preparation testing and characterization of materials, to the use of spectroscopic techniques under relevant reaction conditions (structure-activity relationships), to the measurement of vehicle emissions.
Contact: Prof. Dr. Anke Weidenkaff

Exhaust Gas Treatment for Mobility

Pollutant conversion optimisation on modern automotive exhaust aftertreatment systems requires understanding and targeted tuning of the combustion process as well as of the exhaust flow, heat and composition. The goal is the development of aftertreatment systems with high efficiency and low precious metal requirements. Activities focus on three-way catalysts for CNG engines, oxidation catalysts with particulate filters and SCR processes for diesel engines:

  • optimization of novel (Empa developed) ceramic foam substrates
  • experimental study of flow processes (mainly by Particle Image Velocimetry)
  • numerical simulation for fundamental understanding of relevant phenomena
  • characterization deposition and regeneration mechanisms in particulate filters
  • prototyping and vehicle applications

Contact: Dr. P. Dimopoulos Eggenschwiler

Active Filtration

Research in the filtration area involves applications of novel filter materials to remove particulates, harmful chemicals and pathogens for pollution control and protection of environment and human health. Research topics include: composite filters of nano- and micrometer fibers, functionalized filters for simultaneous removal of particulates and harmful chemicals, filtration of nanoparticles of different morphologies, and penetration tests of personal protective equipments.
Contact: Prof. J. Wang

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