Heterogeneous photocatalysis allows both decontamination as a disinfectant of currents gaseous, indoor and effluent environments and is based on irradiating the surface of a semiconductor to be generate electron-hole pairs that will oxidation-reduction reactions with pollutants adsorbed on its surface.
Often, especially for the air treatment, are required supported catalysts. The substrate must combine surface and optical properties with chemical and physical resistance, and determines the design of the photocatalytic reactors. The photocatalytic reactor offered is simple and combines good irradiation conditions and flow rate. It consists of two concentric tubes transparent, irradiated from the inside by a fluorescent lamp and from the outside by solar radiation captured by a CPC (Compound Parabolic Collector); in the interanular the potocatalyst is placed. The designed polygon-shaped structures that make it possible to build, from single units, versatile modules in shape and length, easy to assemble, irradiate and replace that allow to have a modular and well distributed photocatalyst.
These features allow 24-hour operation per day, use as photocatalytic support adsorbent but opaque materials to the radiation -which facilitates the retention of possible by-products and prolong the life of the catalyst in case of deactivation-, and operate in semi-continuous mode by alternating cycles of photocatalytic activity and regeneration by washing. This system has been successfully tested in the elimination of H2S and other VOCs present in the air from sewage treatment plants.
For this technology, the Spanish R&D institution is looking to establish license or commercial agreements with technical cooperation.