Oxidation technology

In terms of organic chemistry, oxidation is defined as a reaction which causes carbon to lose electron density.

This can be caused by a carbon atom forming a bond with a more electronegative atom (e.g. oxygen, nitrogen), or breaking a bond with a less electronegative atom (e.g. hydrogen).

Consequently a hydrocarbon reacting with oxygen to form new C-O bonds constitutes an oxidation reaction.

Johnson Matthey's DAVY™ liquid-phase oxidation technology forms part of our purified terephthalic acid (PTA) process, which is based on the COMPRESS™ PTA flowsheet we developed in conjunction with Dow.

COMPRESS PTA employs conventional chemistry with a breakthrough combination of proven processes to generate high-quality product with less equipment and a smaller plot space.

The oxidation stage of COMPRESS PTA sees para-xylene oxidise to terephthalic acid via the overall reaction shown:

The resulting crude terephthalic acid (CTA) then undergoes a streamlined series of hydrogenation, crystallisation, filtration and drying steps to yield the final purified terephthalic acid (PTA) product.


COMPRESS is a trademark of The Dow Chemical Company.

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Licensed processes team