Pilot plant reactors offer very important advantages in testing operating conditions such as temperature, pressure, residence time, catalyst to feed ratio, instrumentation and so on. However, such units are very costly when used, for example, for catalyst and feedstock screening tests where many tests are required to find out the effect of new formulations on product yield under different operating conditions. Micro-reactors are, on the other hand, ideal equipment for such purposes as with such systems running an operation is not expensive, performing a test does not take significant time, switching from an operating condition to one another is rather quick and above all, mass of required catalyst and feedstock is small i.e. in the order of grams. Therefore, considerable time and cost are saved through running tests in the small-scale reactors.
PEARL members Dr. Said Samih, Dr. Mohammad Latifi, Dr. Sherif Farag and Prof. Jamal Chaouki reviewed some state-of-the-art micro-reactors that they have developed and commissioned at PEARL in the Journal of Chemical Engineering and Processing- Process Intensification.
Dr. Cornelia Chilan from the Physics-Engineering Department and Pearl members Maryam Abdollahi Neisiani, Dr. Mohammad Latifi, Prof. Jamal Chaouki developed a new approach for analyzing rare earth elements (REE) in high content mineral matrices by Neutron Activation Analysis (NAA).
REE k0 and Q0 values, spectral interferences and nuclear interferences were experimentally evaluated and improved with Alfa Aesar Specpure Plasma Standard 1000 mg kg-1 mono-rare earth solutions. The new iterative gamma-ray self-attenuation and neutron self-shielding methods were investigated with powder standards prepared from 100 mg of 99.9% Alfa Aesar mono rare earth oxide diluted with silica oxide. The overall performance of the new k0-NAA method for REEs was validated using a certified reference material (CRM) from Canadian Certified Reference Materials Project (REE-2). The REE concentration was determined with an uncertainty below 7% (at 95% confidence level) and proved good consistency with the CRM certified concentrations.
Check it out in The International Journal of Pure and Applied Analytical Chemistry (Talanta)
Said Samih and Jamal Chaouki have recently published a research article in the Canadian Journal of Chemical Engineering. The developed Fluidized Bed Thermogravimetric Analyzer (FB-TGA) in PEARL group was employed to investigate the pyrolysis and gasification of coal. Syngas (a mixture of CO and H2) was produced from such a complex feedstock, and novel kinetic parameters were predicted. Five grams of coal was gasified without observing a diffusion control step. In contrary to the conventional TGAs, the thermocouple of the FB-TGA measured the direct temperature of the reaction in this work, and consequently, the temperature gradient was eliminated. This unique technique allows the development of novel kinetic parameters from the FB-TGA for both pyrolysis and gasification reactions.
This article is accessible from here.
Link of the article : https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/cjce.23198