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Elementary Principles of Chemical Processes

Elementary Principles of Chemical Processes

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Published by German Yaibona

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Published by: German Yaibona on Jun 19, 2011
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ELEMENTARY PRINCIPLES OF CHEMICAL PROCESSES13.1 The objective can be described most simply as converting methaneand water into methanol and hydrogen, and then purifying the Methanol sothat it meets specifications . The overall process stoichiometry is given bythe following relationship:CH4 + H2O CH3OH + H2From this statement, estimate the feed rates of the natural gas (Kmol/h,SCMH) and steam (Kmol/h, Kg/h) fed as reactants (as opposed to fuel)to thereformer .(Note: the requested estimate neglects formation of by-productsand the carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide lost in the purge stream.)
Five percent excess air is used in burning the reformer fuel; it is drawninto the system at 30 ◦C and 70% relative humidity. Estimate the averagemolecular weight of the air. Why does it differ from the value of 29determined in Example 3.3-4 even though the ratio of nitrogen to oxygen isthe same?Determine the flow rate of this stream (Kmol,m3) per Kmol of natural gasburned.13.3 What are the compositions (mole and mass fractions) and volumetricflow rates (m3/Kmol CH4 fed to burners) of (a) the effluent gas from thereformer burners and (b) the gas entering the stack?Use a Methane feed rate to the reformer of 1600 Kmol/h as a basis forsubsequent calculations. When all calculations have been completed, scalethe results based on the required production rate of specification-grademethanol.13.4 the primary purpose of the reformer is to convert methane and waterto carbon monoxide and hydrogen (Equation 13.1). The extent of thisreaction is limited by chemical equilibrium. Where:Subscript 13.1 refers to the steam-reforming reaction (equation 13.1), Y1 isthe mole fraction of species (i), P is the system pressure (atm.) and T is thetemperature (K).(a)If equation 13.1 were the only reaction occurring in the reformer,estimate the composition of the product gas that would be leaving
the reformer and the conversion of CH4, assuming the productstream has achieved chemical equilibrium at 855 °C and 1.6 MPa.What would be the total flow rate of this stream (Kmol/h, Kg/h)?(b)It is specified that the molar ratio of steam to methane fed to thereformer is 3.0, whereas the stoichiometric ratio for the reformingreaction (Equation 13.1) is 1 mole of water per mole of methane.Estimate the conversion of methane for steam-to-methane feed ratiosof 1:1 and 2:1, and compare these to the conversion in part a. Basedon your results, explain in your own words why you think the ratio of 3 moles of steam per mole of methane was chosen for the process.13.5 As pointed out in the Process Description, the water-gas shiftreaction (Equation 13.2) occurs in the reformer along with the reformingreaction (Equation 13.1). It to is controlled by chemical equilibrium.Where the nomenclature is analogous to that in the preceding problem.(a)Taking into account the occurrence of reactions given by bothequations 13.1 and 13.2, estimate the composition of the product gasleaving the reformer and the conversion of CH4, assuming theproduct stream leaving the reformer has achieved chemicalequilibrium at 855 °C and 1.6 MPa. What is the total flow rate of thisstream in both Kmol/h and Kg/h? What effect does the water-gas shiftreaction have on the production of CO at the reformer conditions?(b)The ratio of CO to H2 can be an important variable in efficient use of raw materials. In this case study a 3:1 steam-to-methane molar ratioof feed stream was specified. Determine how this feed ratio affectsthe ratio of CO to H2 in the product from the reformer assuming thereaction products are in chemical equilibrium at 855 °C and 1.6 MPa.13.6 Quantitatively demonstrate that high temperatures and low pressuresfavor the formation of CO and H2 in the reformer. Do this by calculating andthen plotting the production rates (Kmol/Kmol of CH4 fed) of CO and H2 inthe reformer product stream over the temperature range 750 °C to 950 °Cat 1.2, 1.6, and 2.0 MPa. Furthermore, construct plots showing the effect of temperature and pressure on selectivity (defined as Kmol CO formed perKmol CO2 formed) over the same range of conditions.Assuming that your results support the hypothesis that high temperaturesand low pressures favor the formation of CO and H2, speculate as to whythe temperature and pressure are at the values specified in the processdescription (855 °C and 1.6 MPa) rather than at a higher temperature andlower pressure.
13.7 The reformer product gas leaves the reformer at 855 °C.(a) Using the flow rate of the product gas determined in problem 13.5,Calculate the rate (KJ/h) at which heat must be transferred fromthe combustion gases to the gases flowing through the inside of thereformer tubes.(b) What is the required flow rate of natural gas (Kmol/h and SCMM) tothe reformer burners?Assume that the natural gas is burned to completion in the reformerfirebox and that the combustion gases leave the firebox at 960 °C.(c)The thermal efficiency of the firebox may be defined as thepercentage of the lower heating value of the fuel transferred to the reformergases. Estimate the lower heating value of methane and, assuming thecombustion gases leave the firebox at 960 °C, the corresponding thermalefficiency of the firebox.13.8 The heated tube length in the reformer is 10 m and the externaldiameter of the tubes is 10.5 cm. If the rate of heat transfer (Ǫ) from thecombustion gases in the firebox to the reformer gases were accomplishedentirely by convection, the following equation would apply:Where U
is an overall heat transfer coefficient based on the externalsurface area of the reformer tubes in the firebox, A
is the total externalsurface area of the tubes, and ΔT
is an average difference betweentemperatures of the heat source (combustion gases) and the heat sink(reformer reaction gases):Where ΔT
and ΔT
are differences in temperature between the reformer gasand combustion gas at the inlet and at the outlet of the firebox. If thecombustion gases are assumed to have a constant temperature in thefirebox of 960 °C (i.e., they are perfectly mixed), and U
= 50 Btu/(
F * ft
*h), what is the required number of tubes in the firebox? In fact, a largefraction of the heat transferred to the tubes is accomplished by amechanism other than convection. What is that mechanism? (Hint: think of your experience in being close to a flame associated with combustion of natural gas). What will consideration of this additional mechanism mean interms of the number of tubes required in the firebox?13.9

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