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A novel water perm-selective membrane dual-type reactor concept for Fischer–Tropsch synthesis of GTL (gas to liquid) technology

Rahimpour, M.R., Mirvakili, A., Paymooni, K.
Energy 2011 v.36 no.2 pp. 1223-1235
artificial membranes, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, fluidized beds, gasoline, hydrogen, models, temperature
The present study proposes a novel configuration of Fischer–Tropsch synthesis (FTS) reactors in which a fixed-bed water perm-selective membrane reactor is followed by a fluidized-bed hydrogen perm-selective membrane reactor. This novel concept which has been named fixed-bed membrane reactor followed by fluidized-bed membrane reactor (FMFMDR) produces gasoline from synthesis gas. The walls of the tubes of a fixed-bed reactor (water-cooled reactor) of FMFMDR configuration are coated by a high water perm-selective membrane layer. In this new configuration, two membrane reactors instead of one membrane reactor are developed for FTS reactions. In other words, two different membrane layers are used. In order to investigate the performance of FMFMDR, a one-dimensional heterogeneous model is taken into consideration. The simulation results of three schemes named fluidized-bed membrane dual-type reactor (FMDR), FMFMDR and conventional fixed-bed reactor (CR) are presented. They have been compared in terms of temperature, gasoline and CO₂ yields, H₂ and CO conversions and the water permeation rate through the membrane layer. Results show that the gasoline yield in FMFMDR is higher than the one in FMDR. The FMFMDR configuration not only decreases the undesired product such as CO₂ but also produces more gasoline.