Summary: AN ABSTRACT OF THE THESIS OF
Daniel Alan Peterson for the degree of Master of Science in
Mechanical Engineering presented on June 4, 2010.
Numerical Simulation of Micro/Mini-Channel based Methane-Steam Reformer
Sourabh V. Apte
Numerical modeling of methane-steam reforming is performed in a
micro/mini-channel with heat input through catalytic channel walls. The
low-Mach number, variable density Navier-Stokes equations together with
multicomponent reactions are solved using a parallel numerical framework.
Methane-steam reforming is modeled by three reduced-order reactions occurring
on the reactor walls. The surface reactions in the presence of a catalyst are
modeled as Neumann boundary conditions to the governing equations. Two
catalysts are investigated: a porous Nickel substrate and a porous felt with
deposited Palladium nanoparticles. The reduced-order mechanism kinetics model
is coupled with the flow solver to resolve the chemical species field within the
reactor geometry. The effects of the total heat input, heat flux profile, flow rate
and inlet steam-methane molar concentration on production of hydrogen are
investigated in detail.