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Adiabatic reactor simulations of the reverse flow catalytic membrane reactor concept with Perovskite membranes

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Microsoft Word - JorisSmit-ISMR5.doc ADIABATIC REACTOR SIMULATIONS OF THE REVERSE FLOW CATALYTIC MEMBRANE REACTOR CONCEPT WITH PEROVSKITE MEMBRANES J. Smit, W. Zhang, M. van Sint Annaland and J.A.M. Kuipers, University of Twente, Enschede, The Netherlands In Gas-To-Liquid processes natural gas is converted to syngas via partial oxidation with pure oxygen, which is subsequently converted to liquid fuels via the Fischer-Tropsch reaction. Mainly due to the large costs associated with cryogenic air separation and complex heat integration GTL processes have not found widespread application yet, although some large plants are currently being commercialised in Qatar. In these GTL processes excess oxygen (20-40%) needs to be used for the partial oxidation unit together with preheating of the feed streams (up to 400 ºC) to achieve high syngas yields. The air separation costs can be substantially reduced by integrating the air separation inside the partial oxidation reactor using perovskite membranes as was shown by a number of authors (e.g. Balachandran, 1995). In order to integrate the recuperative heat exchange inside the membrane reactor as well to reduce costs even further the reverse flow concept can be used. Therefore, we recently proposed the Reverse Flow Catalytic Membrane Reactor (RFCMR) concept with perovskite membranes (Smit et al., 2004), see Figure 1 for a schematic overview. With a simulation study in which a constant oxygen flux all along the membrane was assumed the conceptual feasibility of the RFCMR concept with perovskite membranes was already demonstrated (Smit et al., 2003). However, it is well known that the oxygen permeation rate through a perovskite membrane strongly depends on the temperature and the local syngas composition. Therefore, the oxygen permeation flux through a perovskite membrane (LaCaCoFeO3-δ) was measured experimentally with different inert and reducing sweeping gasses at different temperatures. From the experimen

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