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Compact Membrane Systems announces pilot project with DowDuPont

| By Mary Bailey

Membrane technology

CMS membranes achieve separations of similar compounds, such as propane and propylene

Compact Membrane Systems (CMS; Newport, Del.; announced a pilot of its new Optiperm olefins-separation technology with DowDuPont. The project will field test Optiperm membranes, with the ultimate goal of testing a demonstration-size unit with membrane area greater than 100 ft2 within DowDuPont’s facilities. This technology program will be conducted jointly with DowDuPont, focused on C2 and C3 olefin/paraffin separations. Work will be conducted in olefin-rich streams, an application consistent with the recovery and use of olefins from a polymerization reactor purge line.

The aim of CMS’ Optiperm technology is to enable refiners and petrochemical companies to separate and concentrate olefins, the building blocks of the industry, and create value by removing bottlenecks, eliminating waste, and upgrading existing streams, while capturing energy savings and reducing carbon footprint. Ultimately, says the company, Optiperm membranes stand to disrupt and replace legacy distillation systems—the workhorses of the industry – with a more cost and energy efficient solution. Currently, distillation-based olefin separations are estimated to consume 0.3% of all global energy, and are cited as ripe for disruption.

The pilot is the result of a public-private partnership sponsored and supported by the RAPID Manufacturing Institute of AIChE, in an effort to improve US Manufacturing and unleash savings in energy-intensive industries. Karen Fletcher, CEO of RAPID stated, “CMS’ OptipermTM represents one of several breakthrough technologies that we are encouraging our members to pursue. We anticipate that this technology will not only be a paradigm shift for the industry but also financially and environmentally significant in the years ahead.”

For more information on CMS’ Optiperm technology, read Extending Membranes’ Reach Across the CPI