Copper zinc oxide nanocatalysts grown on cordierite substrate for hydrogen production using methanol steam reforming

Opeoluwa O. Fasanya, Rashid Al-Hajri, Omar U. Ahmed, Myo Myint, Abdulazeez Y. Atta, Baba Y. Jibril*, Joydeep Dutta

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Hydrogen production from methanol rather than the traditional source, methane, is considered to be advantageous in ease of transportation and storage. However, the current copper-based catalysts utilized in methanol steam reforming are associated with challenges of sintering at high temperature and production of CO which could poison fuel cells. In addressing these challenges, ZnO nanorods were grown hydrothermally on the surface of cordierite and impregnated with Cu to produce catalysts for methanol steam reforming. The catalysts were characterized using SEM, XRD, FTIR, XPS, BET and Raman Spectroscopy. A fixed-bed reactor was used for testing the catalysts while the reaction products were characterized using a GC fitted with FID and TCD. The effects of temperature, methanol concentration and particle size of catalysts on methanol steam reforming were investigated. The experiments were carried out between 180 and 350 °C. CO selectivity of 0% was observed for temperatures between 180 and 230 °C for 0.8 MeOH:1H2O with an average H2 selectivity of 98% for that temperature range. XPS showed that the catalyst was relatively unchanged after reaction while Raman spectroscopy revealed coke formation on the catalyst surface for reactions carried out above 300 °C. This shows that the catalyst is active and selective for the reaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22936-22946
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number41
Publication statusPublished - Aug 30 2019


  • Copper zinc oxide catalysts
  • Cordierite
  • Hydrogen production
  • Methanol steam reforming
  • Nanocatalysts
  • Nanorods

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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