High-Pressure Hydrogenation Laboratory

University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario
What the facility does

Explosion-proof high-pressure hydrogenation lab featuring three Hastelloy corrosion-resistant stirred batch reactors

Areas of expertise
  • Homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis in batch reactors under extreme conditions.
  • Conversion of biomass derived substrate (sugar derivatives, pyrolysis bio-oil) to value-added products by through hydrogenation and hydrodeoxygenation (HDO) reactions.
  • Quantitative analysis of complex reaction mixtures by GC, GC-MS, IR, NMR.
  • Kinetic, thermodynamic and statistical analysis of complex catalytic reaction cascades.
  • Remediation and valuation of bauxite residues (“Red Mud”).
Research services
  • Lab-scale catalytic hydrogenation reactions (25-250 mL reaction volume) at temperatures ranging from ambient to extreme conditions (up to 450 °C and 340 atm of hydrogen pressure).
  • Sampling from these reactions at temperature and pressure.
  • Qualitative and quantitative analysis of these samples.
  • Data processing and (statistical) analysis of results from these analyses.
  • Design of experiment studies.
Sectors of application
  • Chemical industries
  • Clean technology
  • Energy
  • Manufacturing and processing
  • Mining, minerals and metals

Parker Autoclave Engineers 100 or 300ml (switchable), Hastelloy C-276 High Temperature Bolted Closure Reactors (3)



The reactors enable (hydrogenation) reactions at under extreme conditions, e.g. in super-critical water and/or under high hydrogen pressure.



• 5,000 psi maximum pressure.

• Metal seal ring for 510ºC maximum temperature.

• MagneDrive rated for 3,000 max rpm, 16 in/lbs torque, Dispersimax Impeller, Purebon 658RCH bearings, 1/2 HP, 90 VDC XP motor, IS speed sensor.

• The reactors have a sample tube with air op valve and manual metering valve, vent with manual valve, sparge tube with manual valve.

• The reactors have a 7,500 psi gauge and 10,000 psi pressure transducer.

• Mass flow controllers capable of measuring hydrogen consumption of the reactions at temperature and pressure (up to 1,500 ± 2 psi or 4,500 ± 5 psi).

Temperature will be controlled by a Type-K process thermocouple, Type-K external thermocouple and a 120 VAC purgeable electric furnace.

  • Rio Tinto ALCAN
  • Los Alamos National Laboratory (USA)
  • Federal University of Lavras, Department of Chemistry (Brazil)
  • Institute for Chemicals and Fuels from Alternative Resources (ICFAR)
  • Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics (DICP) (China)
Research Group Website (Publications)http://www.chemistry.uoguelph.ca/schlaf/publications.html