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Title: Method for cracking hydrocarbon compositions using a submerged reactive plasma system

A method for cracking a liquid hydrocarbon composition (e.g. crude oil) to produce a cracked hydrocarbon product. A liquid hydrocarbon composition is initially provided. An electrical arc is generated directly within the hydrocarbon composition so that the arc is entirely submerged in the composition. Arc generation is preferably accomplished using a primary and secondary electrode each having a first end submerged in the composition. The first ends of the electrodes are separated from each other to form a gap therebetween. An electrical potential is then applied to the electrodes to generate the arc within the gap. A reactive gas is thereafter delivered to the arc which forms a bubble around the arc. Gas delivery may be accomplished by providing a passageway through each electrode and delivering the gas through the passageways. The arc and gas cooperate to produce a plasma which efficiently cracks the hydrocarbon composition.
  1. (Idaho Falls, ID)
Issue Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Lockheed Idaho Technologies Company (Idaho Falls, ID) INEEL
Patent Number(s):
US 5626726
Contract Number:
AC07-94ID13223; AC07-76ID01570
Research Org:
Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL), Idaho Falls, ID (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States
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