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Piloting of a ‘revolutionary’ approach to olefin cracking

By Gerald Ondrey |

Earlier this year, Coolbrook Oy (Helsinki, Finland; www.coolbrook.fi) received a €3.6-million grant from the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation Tekes to further develop its patented RotoDynamicReactor (RDR) technology, which has the potential to improve ethylene yields by 34% compared to conventional furnace-based naphtha crackers. The two-year project — led by Coolbrook and Neste Jacobs Oy (Porvoo, Finland; www.nestejacobs.com), in collaboration with the University of Oxford’s Osney Thermo Fluids laboratory, the University of Cambridge’s Whittle laboratory, and major chemical producers, such as The Dow Chemical Co., as well as equipment manufacturers, including MAN Diesel & Turbo SE — will build and test a pilot reactor based on RDR technology to verify olefin yields and confirm the reactor model, which combines reaction kinetics and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) results. The commercial launch of this new technology is expected during 2019. RDR is a regenerative turbomachine (diagram) consisting of three axial blade rows (stator, rotor and diffuser) and a toroidal vaneless space that circumfrentially connects the blade passages, which allows the regenerative heating of the working fluid, explains Coolbrook CEO…
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