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Title: Novel Magnetically Fluidized Bed Reactor Development for the Looping Process: Coal to Hydrogen Production R&D

The coal to hydrogen project utilizes the iron/iron oxide looping process to produce high purity hydrogen. The input energy for the process is provided by syngas coming from gasification process of coal. The reaction pathways for this process have been studied and favorable conditions for energy efficient operation have been identified. The Magnetically Stabilized Porous Structure (MSPS) is invented. It is fabricated from iron and silica particles and its repeatable high performance has been demonstrated through many experiments under various conditions in thermogravimetric analyzer, a lab-scale reactor, and a large scale reactor. The chemical reaction kinetics for both oxidation and reduction steps has been investigated thoroughly inside MSPS as well as on the surface of very smooth iron rod. Hydrogen, CO, and syngas have been tested individually as the reducing agent in reduction step and their performance is compared. Syngas is found to be the most pragmatic reducing agent for the two-step water splitting process. The transport properties of MSPS including porosity, permeability, and effective thermal conductivity are determined based on high resolution 3D CT x-ray images obtained at Argonne National Laboratory and pore-level simulations using a lattice Boltzmann Equation (LBE)-based mesoscopic model developed during this investigation. The results ofmore » those measurements and simulations provide necessary inputs to the development of a reliable volume-averaging-based continuum model that is used to simulate the dynamics of the redox process in MSPS. Extensive efforts have been devoted to simulate the redox process in MSPS by developing a continuum model consist of various modules for conductive and radiative heat transfer, fluid flow, species transport, and reaction kinetics. Both the Lagrangian and Eulerian approaches for species transport of chemically reacting flow in porous media have been investigated and verified numerically. Both approaches lead to correct prediction of hydrogen production rates over a large range of experimental conditions in the laboratory scale reactor and the bench-scale reactor. In the economic analysis, a comparison of the hydrogen production plants using iron/iron oxide looping cycle and the conventional process has been presented. Plant configurations are developed for the iron/iron oxide looping cycle. The study suggests a higher electric power generation but a lower hydrogen production efficiency comparing with the conventional process. Additionally, it was shown that the price of H{sub 2} obtained from our reactor can be as low as $1.7/kg, which is 22% lower than the current price of the H{sub 2} obtained from reforming plants.« less
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Resource Type:
Technical Report
Research Org:
University Of Florida
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Country of Publication:
United States