Published January 2020
The importance of emission control catalysts has been increasing as environmental concerns and measures to fight pollution have become more important globally. China has become the largest market for vehicle emission control catalysts. Europe is the second1largest market, followed by North America. Catalyst consumption in China will continue to grow along with increasing vehicle production and with increasingly stringent emission control regulations. The fastest developing regions are Southeast Asia and India.
The main processes used in stationary emission control catalysts are selective catalytic reduction 3SCR4, catalytic oxidation, catalyzed traps/filters for particulate matter, and catalytic incineration of VOC emissions. The SCR catalyst market in North America, Europe, and Japan is mainly a reload market, while the main new market for coal1fired power plants/SCR catalysts is in China and India.
The following pie chart shows world consumption of catalysts for emission control catalysts for mobile sources on a value basis:
Two factors are driving the growth of the mobile emission catalyst markets: further tightening of regulations in the United States, the European Union, and Japan, and the introduction or further tightening of emission standards in China, India, Other Asian countries, Russia, and Latin America in the forecast period. Emissions from mobile and stationary sources have increased in recent years.
Catalysts for environmental protection are becoming more widespread for applications such as off1gas cleaning, including
- NOx from electrical power plants, refineries and chemical plants, and furnaces, boilers, and incinerators.
- VOC emission treatment from chemical plants, surface coating facilities, and so on.
- Regenerative thermal oxidizers and converters for exhaust streams in chemical plants.
- Dioxin reduction from waste incinerators.
- Catalytic converters in two1stroke stationary engines. Biofuels such as palm oil can be used in combined heat and power plants in a low1speed two1stroke engine. This combination represents a special challenge to NOx reduction technology to fulfill air emissions legislation. The chemistry of biofuels differs from fossil fuels in that the exhaust gas includes phosphorus, which needs to be taken into consideration in order to avoid catalyst deactivation. Two1stroke diesel engines, on the other hand, result in very low exhaust temperatures, demanding a particular design for reliable operation of NOx reduction.
Recently, apparent manipulations in automotive software resulted in emission values under test conditions that did not reflect real emissions under normal use conditions. It appears that some automotive producers tried to avoid the use of selective catalytic reduction 3SCR4 catalysts in smaller diesel vehicles. These catalysts require additional space under the hood, which is already tight, as well as an additional tank for the reducing agent, which in turn is inconvenient for the consumer as it needs to be refilled. As it turns out, the use of only oxidation catalysts does not seem to allow for the simultaneous achievement of target values for diesel consumption, motor power, and emission values under normal driving conditions; accordingly, SCR catalysts will become the norm in these types of diesel vehicles in the coming years.
Trends that are expected to affect the global emission control catalyst business from ;9:= to ;9;< include the following:
- Increasing automobile production, especially in developing countries.
- More1stringent legislation on automobile emissions in both developed and developing countries.
- More1stringent emission standards for off1road diesel engines 3e.g., industrial drilling rigs, compressors, construction wheel loaders, bulldozers, nonroad trucks, highway excavators, forklift trucks, road maintenance equipment, snowplows, ground support equipment in airports, aerial lifts and mobile cranes, agricultural and forestry tractors4 and for ships and vessels and railway locomotives and railcars.
- More1stringent legislation on emissions from stationary sources.
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