Catalytic oxidation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) - A review

Muhammad Shahzad Kamal, Shaikh A. Razzak, Mohammad M. Hossain*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1108 Scopus citations


Emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) is one of the major contributors to air pollution. The main sources of VOCs are petroleum refineries, fuel combustions, chemical industries, decomposition in the biosphere and biomass, pharmaceutical plants, automobile industries, textile manufacturers, solvents processes, cleaning products, printing presses, insulating materials, office supplies, printers etc. The most common VOCs are halogenated compounds, aldehydes, alcohols, ketones, aromatic compounds, and ethers. High concentrations of these VOCs can cause irritations, nausea, dizziness, and headaches. Some VOCs are also carcinogenic for both humans and animals. Therefore, it is crucial to minimize the emission of VOCs. Among the available technologies, the catalytic oxidation of VOCs is the most popular because of its versatility of handling a range of organic emissions under mild operating conditions. Due to that fact, there are numerous research initiatives focused on developing advanced technologies for the catalytic destruction of VOCs. This review discusses recent developments in catalytic systems for the destruction of VOCs. Review also describes various VOCs and their sources of emission, mechanisms of catalytic destruction, the causes of catalyst deactivation, and catalyst regeneration methods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117-134
Number of pages18
JournalAtmospheric Environment
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This project was funded by the National Plan for Science, Technology and Innovation (MAARIFAH) of the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) through the Science & Technology Unit at the King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals (KFUPM) , Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (award number 13-ENV1968-04 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier Ltd.


  • Catalysts
  • Kinetics
  • Mechanism
  • Multicomponent catalysts
  • Oxidation
  • Oxidation process
  • VOCs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (all)
  • Atmospheric Science


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