The oxidation of toluene in air was investigated using a dielectric barrier discharge (DBD) combined with a Pd/Al2O3 catalyst. When using only plasma, rather low selectivity toward CO2 was obtained: 32-35%. By filling the DBD reactor with Pd/Al2O3 catalyst the CO2 selectivity was significantly enhanced (80-90%), however, a large amount of toluene was desorbed from the catalyst when the discharge was operated. By filling a quarter of the discharge gap with catalyst and placing the rest of the catalyst downstream of the plasma reactor, an important increase of CO2 selectivity (~75%) and a 15% increase in toluene conversion were achieved as compared to the results with plasma alone. The catalyst exhibited a very good stability in this reaction.
Magureanu, M., Dobrin, D., Mandache, N. B., Cojocaru, B., & Parvulescu, V. I. (2013). Toluene oxidation by non-thermal plasma combined with palladium catalysts. Frontiers in Chemistry, 1. https://doi.org/10.3389/fchem.2013.00007