Production of n-alkanes by In-situ Hydrogenation and Decarboxylation of Unsaturated Fatty Acid with hydrogen donor

This research topic has significant potential industrial application as it can convert waste (or industrially unusable) fatty acids into fully saturated fatty acids by hydrogenation, then decarboxylation to long hydrocarbon chains. Catalyst is a fundamental aspect to many chemical reactions, where many important laboratory and industrial processes are dependent on carefully selected catalyst to operate. Majority of this research project will be dedicated to finding the right catalyst by prepare and screen various catalysts that might be suitable for decarboxylation and hydrogenation reactions. Co-precipitation will be used to precipitate out fine particles and form catalysts to be used. A microreactor will be used to allow greater range of conditions to be tested while exercise finer micro process control. Various detection method such x-ray diffraction, TEM, will be used to identify the product and the catalyst used by mapping its detailed molecular structure.

Faculty Supervisor:

Jesse Zhu


Renze Jiang



Engineering - chemical / biological



Western University


Globalink Research Award

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