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Products from natural gas

By Gerald Ondrey |

Linde Engineering (Pullach, Germany; www.linde-engineering.com) has developed a process to recover helium, hydrocarbons and purified carbon dioxide from natural gas, while conditioning the natural gas for pipeline transport by adjusting the water and heavy-hydrocarbon dew point and the CO2 concentration. The process — presented at the Gastech conference last month in Houston — combines technologies of BASF SE (Ludwigshafen, Germany; www.basf.com) and Linde. Helium is commonly recovered from natural gas when a cryogenic separation is employed. The hybrid process eliminates the need for cryogenic conditions, giving access to a new, highly profitable He source. The process consists of two stages of Linde’s HiSelect Powered by Evonik membranes, an upstream BASF Durasorb hydrocarbon-removal unit (HRU), an integrated BASF OASE acid-gas-removal unit (AGRU) and an integrated Linde Helium PSA unit. The two HiSelect-membrane stages are simultaneously used for helium enrichment and adjustment of CO2 to pipeline specification. The PSA purifies the enriched helium up to 99.999% with a high yield. BASF’s OASE AGRU is used to selectively remove the CO2 from an internal recycle without any He or CH4 loss. BASF’s Durasorb HRU removes heavy…
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