Kinetic Study on Methanol Dehydration to Dimethyl Ether Applying Clinoptilolite Zeolite as the Reaction Catalyst
Keywords:Methanol, Dimethyl ether, Clinoptilolite, Bubbling fluidized bed reactor, Kinetic model
Dehydration of methanol to dimethyl ether (DME), using clinoptilolite-zeolite as the reaction catalyst, within the temperature range of 300-350 °C has been studied in a continuous fluidized bed reactor. The reactor was a cylindrical tube, 26 mm internal diameter and 0.5 m high, placed vertically in a furnace. The effects of some pertinent operating parameters, such as temperature, superficial gas velocity, catalyst’s particle size, and methanol partial pressure, on the extent of dehydration reaction have been investigated. Two hydrodynamic models presented for bubbling fluidized bed reactors, i.e., Kunii - Levenspiel (K-L) as an example of three phase models and El-Halwagi - El-Rifai (H-R) as an example of compartment models were applied to correlate the experimental data. It was determined that the mean absolute deviation between the experimental data and those predicted from K-L model was lower than that observed in the case of H-R model (19% and 70%, respectively). Among the operating parameters, partial pressure of methanol was found to have the highest impact on the process yield.
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