Home / Vita Antonio (Head FPMAT)


Antonio Vita (orcid.= 0000-0003-0569-792X, researchgate)

Born in Messina on  12/06/1972. Graduated in Chemistry at the University of Messina (1997). Ph.D in “Materials for Health, Environment and Energy” (XXVIII cycle, U. Roma Tor Vergata). He worked as scholar-ship at “Nicola Giordano” Institute for Advanced Energy Technologies (ITAE) of CNR from 1999 to 2002; with contracts from 2002 to 2007 and as researcher (permanent staff), from 2008 to today.

Actually, Dr. Vita is the Head of the Fuel Processing Materials And Technologies (FPMaT) Research Team.

His scientific activity is mostly in the field of heterogeneous catalysis applied to the materials and technologies for the energy and industrial sector. Particularly, the current research
interests of Dr. Vita concern design and characterization of catalysts in pellets or structured form (monoliths, foams) for methanation (CO2 or syngas) and reforming processes (Steam,
Partial Oxidation, Autothermal, Oxy-Steam and Tri-reforming) of fossil fuels (natural gas, LPG, diesel) and renewable fuels (biogas, bio-ethanol).
Other activities are correlated with the development of catalytic systems for CO abatement (PROX) and of porous solid materials for gas stream cleaning (CO2 and H2S separation
from biogas).
Parallel to the development of materials, the research activity of Dr. Vita regards also the design and realization of reactors and small-scale Fuel Processor Systems based on reforming  or CO2 conversion processes.
Some of the prototypes developed under national and international research programs and for private companies are reported below:

• Multitubular reactor for the production of 1Nm3/h of Synthetic Natural Gas from CO2  (RDS, PTR 2019-2021, under development);

• Reforming unit based on a diesel steam reforming (SR), dedicated to a Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC) in a power range until 1 kWe, to support auxiliary power units (APUs) for naval applications (DSR1, PON TESEO);

• Reforming unit developed to reach a nominal syngas production of about 2.5 Nm3/h of syngas (H2 + CO) from SR or OSR of biogas produced in an industrial wastewater treatment plant (SOFCOM EU project);
• Hydrogen generator unit projected and realized for a maximum hydrogen production of 8.5 Nm3/h, based on autothermal reforming of CH4/C3H8 (HYGEN II, SIRTIS, AUTOGAS NORD);
• Hydrogen generator unit projected and realized for a maximum hydrogen production of 5 Nm3/h, based on autothermal reforming of CH4/C3H8 (HYGEN I);

Dr. Vita is also the scientific responsible for three laboratories at the ITAE: • Development of catalysts for CO2/Syngas methanation and hydrogen/Syngas production; • Development of reactors and prototypes for methanation and reforming processes; • Test station for reactors and prototypes.

Dr. Vita is involved in several International and National research programs, some of the more recent are shown below:
• MSE-“Fondo per la Ricerca di Sistema Elettrico –– Piano Triennale 2015–2017 – Progetto Sistemi Elettrochimici per l’accumulo di energia”. (POA 2015, Scientific Responsible for
CO2 methanation catalysts development activity)
• PON Imprese e Competività 2016-2020, Combined HEAt, Power, and Hydrogen generation system integrated in a hydrogen filling station, (CHEAPH2, Scientific Responsible for
catalyst characterization and test/optimization of an ATR unit);
• PRIN 2012–2015, Intensification of Catalytic Processes for Clean Energy, Low-Emission Transport and Sustainable Chemistry using Open-Cell Foams as Novel Advanced Structured
Materials (IFOAMS, Head of the ITAE Research Unit);
• PON TESEO 2012-2015, Development and characterization of a diesel reforming unit properly sized to feeding a solid oxide (SOFC) fuel cell system (0.5-1 kW), (Head of the ITAE
Research Unit);
• PON TESEO 2012-2015, Integration and characterization of the reformer-SOFC system fed with diesel for powering auxiliary unit on-board in naval applications (Head of the ITAE
Research Unit);
• SOFCOM EU 2011-2015, SOFC CCHP with poly-fuel: Operation and Maintenance (Responsible for the biogas reformer developing).


Dr. Vita is an Active Member of:

  • HYDROGEN EUROPE RESEARCH. Pillar 1: H2 production, Tec. Comm.: Other modes of H2 production: biomass & waste gasification, direct solar production, pyrolysis (RM2); Pillar 2: H2 storage, transport and distribution, Tec. Comm.: H2 Carriers: alternative modes of H2 transport using H2 carriers, (RM6)
  • Technical Steering Committee (HySA Catalysis, Hydrogen South Africa, 2016-2019)

ORGANIZATION AND role in national or international congresses or scientific events

  • Hypothesis XV, Cape Town (South Africa), May 3-6, 2020 – Role: Member of Scientific Committee and Responsible of the Special section “Production of hydrogen from fossil sources, biomass and waste”
  • Hypothesis XIV, Foz fo Iguacu (Brazil), 24-26 April 2019, Member of Scientific Committee and Responsible of the Special Section, “Hydrogen production through the reforming of fossil and renewable fuels”
  • The 4th International Symposium on the Catalysis for Clean Energy and Sustainable Chemistry (CCESC), Bilbao, July 9-11, 2018 – Role: Member of Scientific Committee
  • Hypothesis XIII, Singapore, July 24-27th, 2018 – Role: Member of Scientific Committee
  • Hypothesis XII, Siracusa, June 28-30th, 2017 – Role: Responsible of the Special section on “Hydrogen production from  Renewable Energy Sources and from conventional fossil sources”
  • GEI-ERA 2012, S. Marina di Salina, June 17-22th, 2012 – Role: Member of Organizing Committee

KeyNote and INVITED speaker 

  • Keynote: Structured catalysts for process intensification in reforming and CO2 methanation: catalytic performance and preliminary scale-up, Hypothesis XV Cape Town (South Africa), May 3-6, 2020;
  • Keynote: Distributed hydrogen production: small-scale fuel processors current status and future trends; Hypothesis XIV, Foz fo Iguacu (Brazil), 24-26 April 2019;
  • HySA/Catalysis Workshop Fuel to Electricity, Cape Town 2-3/11/2017. Distributed hydrogen production: Small-scale fuel processor as a key technology  for  the early stages of a hydrogen economy;
  • HySA/Catalysis Workshop Fuel to Electricity, Cape Town 26-28/10/2016. Small-scale reformers for on-site hydrogen production from fossil and renewable fuels;
  • Gas Technology Centre of Excellence (GAZTEM) National Stakeholders Meeting” November 12–14, 2015 Pine Bay Holiday Resort – Kuşadası / Aydın, Turkey, Tri-reforming of Methane and Biogas for Syngas/Hydrogen Production and CCS Technologies: Challenges and Strategies.


He is author and co-author of 68 publications in peer-reviewed journals (Scopus h-index = 25, N. citation = 1649) more than 100 contributes (papers, poster, oral presentations) for international scientific conferences and about 52 technical reports for National and International Projects, N.4 book chapters. N.1  Special Issue: Catalytic Applications of CeO2-Based Materials (Catalysts, MPDI).

Recent publications:

  • Charisiou, N.D., Italiano, C., Pino, L., Sebastian, V., Vita, A., Goula, M.A. Hydrogen production via steam reforming of glycerol over Rh/γ-Al2O3 catalysts modified with CeO2, MgO or La2O3 (2020) Renewable Energy, 162, pp. 908-925.
  • Akiki, E., Akiki, D., Italiano, C., Vita, A., Abbas-Ghaleb, R., Chlala, D., Drago Ferrante, G., Laganà, M., Pino, L., Specchia, S. Production of hydrogen by methane dry reforming: A study on the effect of cerium and lanthanum on Ni/MgAl2O4 catalyst performance (2020) International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 45 (41), pp. 21392-21408.
  • Furtado Amaral, A., Previtali, D., Bassani, A., Italiano, C., Palella, A., Pino, L., Vita, A., Bozzano, G., Pirola, C., Manenti, F. Biogas beyond CHP: The HPC (heat, power & chemicals) process (2020) Energy, 203, art. no. 117820, .
  • Vita, A., Italiano, C., Pino, L., Laganà, M., Ferraro, M., Antonucci, V. High-temperature CO2 methanation over structured Ni/GDC catalysts: Performance and scale-up for Power-to-Gas application (2020) Fuel Processing Technology, 202, art. no. 106365 .
  • Italiano, C., Llorca, J., Pino, L., Ferraro, M., Antonucci, V., Vita, A. CO and CO2 methanation over Ni catalysts supported on CeO2, Al2O3 and Y2O3 oxides (2020) Applied Catalysis B: Environmental, 264, art. no. 118494, .
  • Vita, A. Catalytic applications of ceo2-based materials (2020) Catalysts, 10 (5), art. no. 576, .
  • Pino, L., Italiano, C., Laganà, M., Vita, A., Recupero, V. Kinetic study of the methane dry (CO2) reforming reaction over the Ce0.70La0.20Ni0.10O2-: δ catalyst (2020) Catalysis Science and Technology, 10 (8), pp. 2652-2662.
  • Vita, A., Italiano, C. Fuel and hydrogen related problems for conventional steam reforming of natural gas (2019) Current Trends and Future Developments on (Bio-) Membranes: Membranes in Environmental Applications, pp. 71-89. DOCUMENT TYPE: Book Chapter
  • Andraos, S., Abbas-Ghaleb, R., Chlala, D., Vita, A., Italiano, C., Laganà, M., Pino, L., Nakhl, M., Specchia, S. Production of hydrogen by methane dry reforming over ruthenium-nickel based catalysts deposited on Al2O3, MgAl2O4, and YSZ, (2019) International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 44 (47), pp. 25706-25716.
  • Amjad, U.-E.-S., Quintero, C.W.M., Ercolino, G., Italiano, C., Vita, A., Specchia, S. Methane Steam Reforming on the Pt/CeO2 Catalyst: Effect of Daily Start-Up and Shut-Down on Long-Term Stability of the Catalyst (2019) Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research, 58 (36), pp. 16395-16406.
  • Italiano, C., Bizkarra, K., Barrio, V.L., Cambra, J.F., Pino, L., Vita, A., Renewable hydrogen production via steam reforming of simulated bio-oil over Ni-based catalysts (2019) International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 44 (29), pp. 14671-14682.
  • Ancona, M.A., Antonucci, V., Branchini, L., Catena, F., De Pascale, A., Di Blasi, A., Ferraro, M., Italiano, C., Melino, F., Vita, A. Thermal integration of a high-temperature co-electrolyzer and experimental methanator for Power-to-Gas energy storage system (2019) Energy Conversion and Management, 186, pp. 140-155.
  • Italiano, C., Ashraf, M.A., Pino, L., Quintero, C.W.M., Specchia, S., Vita, A. Rh/CeO2 thin catalytic layer deposition on alumina foams: Catalytic performance and controlling regimes in biogas reforming processes (2018) Catalysts, 8 (10), art. no. 448,
  • Vita, A., Italiano, C., Ashraf, M.A., Pino, L., Specchia, S., Syngas production by steam and oxy-steam reforming of biogas on monolith-supported CeO2-based catalysts (2018) International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 43 (26), pp. 11731-11744.
  • Italiano, C., Luchters, N.T.J., Pino, L., Fletcher, J.V., Specchia, S., Fletcher, J.C.Q., Vita, A., High specific surface area supports for highly active Rh catalysts: Syngas production from methane at high space velocity (2018) International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, 43 (26), pp. 11755-11765.
  • Vita, A., Italiano, C., Pino, L., Frontera, P., Ferraro, M., Antonucci, V. Activity and stability of powder and monolith-coated Ni/GDC catalysts for CO2 methanation (2018) Applied Catalysis B: Environmental, 226, pp. 384-395.
  • Vita, A., Italiano, C., Previtali, D., Fabiano, C., Palella, A., Freni, F., Bozzano, G., Pino, L., Manenti, F. Methanol synthesis from biogas: A thermodynamic analysis (2018) Renewable Energy, 118, pp. 673-684.
  • Ashraf, M.A., Sanz, O., Italiano, C., Vita, A., Montes, M., Specchia, S. Analysis of Ru/La-Al2O3 catalyst loading on alumina monoliths and controlling regimes in methane steam reforming (2018) Chemical Engineering Journal, 334, pp. 1792-1807.
  • Vita, A., Pino, L., Italiano, C., Palella, A. Steam reforming, partial oxidation, and autothermal reforming of ethanol for hydrogen production in conventional reactors (2018) Ethanol: Science and Engineering, pp. 159-191. DOCUMENT TYPE: Book Chapter
  • Italiano, C., Pino, L., Laganà, M., Vita, A. Ceramic monolith- and foam-structured catalysts via in-situ combustion deposition for energetic applications (2018) Annales de Chimie: Science des Materiaux, 42 (3), pp. 405-418.
  • Previtali, D., Vita, A., Bassani, A., Italiano, C., Amaral, A.F., Pirola, C., Pino, L., Palella, A., Manenti, F. Methanol synthesis: A distributed production concept based on biogas plants, (2018) Chemical Engineering Transactions, 65, pp. 409-414.

Contact Information

  • Position Title: Ricercatore
  • Personal Title: PhD.
  • Location: Messina
  • Telephone number: +39090624297
  • E-mail address: antonio.vita@itae.cnr.it