Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Fernando, Sandun

Committee Member

Pordesimo, Lester

Committee Member

Srinivasan, Radhakrishnan

Committee Member

To, S.D. Fillip

Committee Member

Warnock, James

Date of Degree


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Biological Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.)


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering


Recently there has been increasing interest in using glycerol as a substrate on steam reforming due to the increase of biodiesel production. With the increase of biodiesel production a glut of glycerol has resulted and this would be a more suitable substrate for value added production of hydrogen from reforming. Reforming biorenewable viscous fluids such as glycerol is difficult due to mass transfer limitations associated with vaporizing glycerol to gas phase before steam reforming. This study was to evaluate the feasibility of reforming electrically atomized liquid phase glycerol by means of a technique called electro-spray. It was hypothesized that reforming electrically charged glycerol nanodroplets on an oppositely charged conductive catalyst will increase the reforming performance as opposed to a neutral catalyst-substrate system. Hydrogen yield, selectivity was increased by 20%, 25% respectively when nanodroplets introduced. Exerting an electrical charge to the substrate-catalytic system significantly enhanced the reforming performance irrespective of the physical phase.