(701d) Comprehensive Mathematical Modeling of Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis within a Microreactor

Authors: 
Traverso, A., School of Chemical, Biological and Environmental Engineering, Oregon State University
Alanazi, Y., School of Chemical, Biological and Environmental Engineering, Oregon State University
Pommerenck, J., School of Chemical, Biological and Environmental Engineering, Oregon State University
Arnadottir, L., Oregon State University
Jovanovic, G., Oregon State University
Yokochi, A., School of Engineering and Computer Science, Baylor University
The Fischer-Tropsch Synthesis (FTS) is a set of chemical reactions that involves the catalytic hydrogenation of carbon monoxide to various liquid hydrocarbons as well as water. It has received considerable interest of late, primarily driven by recent natural gas booms in the United States and elsewhere. Natural gas, which is chiefly methane, can be steam reformed to synthesis gas (a mix of CO and H2) before being fed to a FTS reactor for conversion to more valuable liquid hydrocarbons such as diesel and naphtha. The goal of this work is to construct a mathematical model that successfully incorporates microkinetics, diffusion, and convection to simulate the FTS process within a microreactor.

This computational model will use COMSOL Multiphysics to simulate the FTS reactions on the surface of a cobalt-based catalysis using the CH2 insertion mechanism. The aim will be to compare the theoretical product distribution determined from this model to experimental results obtained from an already existing microreactor platform. In this contribution, 2-D models of the microreactor will be presented along with steady-state calculations of the final products as well as analysis of surface species concentrations.