“Green” Ethylene Production Provided by Intratec Solutions
By Chemical Engineering |
With a global nominal capacity of about 140 million ton/yr, ethylene is among the main petrochemicals produced worldwide, and is a key building block for the industry. Ethylene is produced mostly via steam-cracking of petroleum-based feedstocks, such as naphtha. Ethylene is a raw material for the manufacture of polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), ethylene oxide and other products.
Global concerns about sustainability and global warming have prompted the chemical industry to develop production routes for ethylene that utilize non-petroleum resources. Renewable ethylene-production alternatives have begun to emerge in this context.
“Green” ethylene can be produced by the dehydration of ethanol, which can be produced from renewable feedstocks such as sugarcane and corn. Ethanol-derived ethylene is chemically identical to traditional ethylene, so downstream processing is equivalent.
A process for ethylene production via ethanol dehydration similar to the processes developed by Chematur Technologies AB (Karlskoga, Sweden; www.chematur.se) and Petron Scientech Inc. (Princeton, N.J.; www.petronscientech.com) is depicted in Figure 1. The reaction occurs in four fixed-catalyst-bed adiabatic reactors.
Figure 1. Green ethylene…