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Catalytic gasification of light and heavy gas oils in supercritical water

  • Rana, Rachita
  • Nanda, Sonil
  • Reddy, Sivamohan
  • Dalai, Ajay
  • Kozinski, Janusz
  • Gökalp, Iskender
Publication Date
May 01, 2020
DOI: 10.1016/j.joei.2020.04.018
OAI: oai:HAL:hal-02902822v1
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Canada has the third-largest oil sand reserves in the world as a result of which, it generates considerable amounts of light gas oil and heavy gas oil through petroleum distillation. With the escalating energy demands, it has become essential to explore alternative fuel resources from biomass and petrochemical residues. This study explores the potential of supercritical water gasification to transform light and heavy gas oils to hydrogen-rich syngas through the optimization of process conditions such as temperature (375e675 C), feed concentration (20e35 wt%) and reaction time (30e75 min). Nickel-supported functionalized carbon nanotubes (10%Ni/FCNT) were synthesized for application in catalytic supercriticalwater gasification. The functionalization of carbon nanotubes resulted in an increase in their surface area from 108 m2/g (in pristine CNT) to 127 m2/g (in FCNT) and 122 m2/g (in 10%Ni/FCNT). The impregnation of catalytic nickel particles onto carbon nanotubes was confirmed through X-ray diffraction (XDR) and scanning electron microscopy-energy dispersive spectroscopy (SEM-EDS). Fouriertransform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy of both gas oils revealed the presence of aliphatics, alkyl-aryl ethers and sulfur-containing compounds among several other aromatics. Light gas oil revealed higher hydrogen yields of 3.32 mol/kg compared to that of heavy gas oil (2.79 mol/kg) at optimal process conditions, i.e. 675 C and 75 min, 20 wt% feed concentration. However, 10%Ni/FCNT enhanced hydrogen yields (4.46 mol/kg), total gas yield (9.22 mol/kg), hydrogen selectivity (94%) and lower heating value (1685 MJ/kg) of product gases obtained from light gas oil in contrast to heavy gas oil. This study indicates a tremendous potential of gas oils for hydrogen generation via hydrothermal gasification.

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