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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The photochemical and thermal oxidation of hydrogen sulphide Tse, Ronald Siu-Man


In order to elucidate the mechanism of hydrogen sulphide oxidation, the photo-oxidation and thermal oxidation of hydrogen sulphide were studied, using gas chromatography for the analysis of final products. Photo-oxidation was studied at 130° and 150°C. Products found were sulphur dioxide, hydrogen, water and sulphur. Production of sulphur dioxide was found to be inhibited by an increase in surface area. Whether in photo- or thermal oxidation, the yield of sulphur dioxide increased drastically with slight increases in (O₂)/H₂S) ratio. This was also observed in the yield of hydrogen in photo-oxidation. Thermal oxidation was studied at 160°, 170°, 190°, 210°, 225°, 240°, and 260°C. Products were sulphur dioxide, water, and sulphur. No hydrogen was found. An expression for the production of sulphur dioxide was obtained: [formula omitted] = k (H₂S)⁻¹→⁺¹ (O₂)³ The overall activation energy was found to be 21.2±2k.cal./mole. Comparison with previously reported works was made and a mechanism proposed.

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