A mechanism for the destruction of CFC-12 in a nonthermal, atmospheric pressure plasma

Claire L. Ricketts, Anna E. Wallis, J. Christopher Whitehead, Kui Zhang

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    The destruction of CFC-12 (CF2Cl2) has been studied in an AC, nonthermal, atmospheric pressure plasma reactor packed with barium titanate beads. The extent of the destruction in air ranges between 8% and 40% depending on the conditions. The decomposition products in air as determined by infrared spectroscopy are CO, CO2, and COF2. It is deduced that the undetected chlorine and fluorine is present as F2 and Cl2. A chemical mechanism for the decomposition is proposed. Large concentrations of NO, NO2, and N2O are also formed. Destruction in a stream of pure N2 is about twice as effective as in air under corresponding conditions. The addition of a small amount of water (∼0.03%) or oxygen (∼0.02%) to the nitrogen carrier gas increases the destruction efficiency but the presence of molecular hydrogen (≤2%) brings about no enhancement. It is suggested that in all cases, the primary decomposition step involves dissociative electron attachment to the CF 2Cl2. This is confirmed by the observed differences in the destruction in pure nitrogen and in air.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)8341-8345
    Number of pages4
    JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry A
    Issue number40
    Publication statusPublished - 7 Oct 2004


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