(160b) Crosslinked Polyimide Hollow Fiber Membrane Performance Under Real Field Gas Conditions

Bhuwania, N., Chevron
Chinn, D., Chevron
Miller, S., Chevron
Husain, S., Chevron
Daniel, C., Chevron
Bell, K., Chevron
Polymeric hollow fiber membranes have been used for CO2 removal in natural gas processing industry for both off-shore and on-shore applications. While these membranes have attractive separation performance in terms of separation efficiency and productivity, the sensitivity of the polymer membrane to impurities and harsh operating conditions continues to be a drawback. These impurities, such as C3+ hydrocarbons, as well as a high partial pressure of CO2, enhance the polymer chainâ??s solubility in glassy polymers, lead to swelling (plasticization) of the polymer, resulting in a loss of separation efficiency.

Considerable laboratory research has been done on the novel membrane materials, to prevent the loss of hydrocarbons, validated under pure CO2 or clean CO2-Hydrocarbon gas mixtures. But very few have tested the membraneâ??s durability against the impurities faced in a real field. Chevron, in collaboration with Georgia Tech, has developed a proprietary XLP (Cross-Linked Polyimide) hollow fiber membrane technology, tested with a real field gas slipstream (with high CO2 partial pressure and hydrocarbons beyond C3â??s). The presentation will cover the importance of membrane robustness under harsh feed conditions and the potential of XLP membranes to operate under such conditions.