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The characterization and removal of foam promoting impurities from blended methyldiethanolamine - piperazine solution using membrane

Ratman, Iwan (2009) The characterization and removal of foam promoting impurities from blended methyldiethanolamine - piperazine solution using membrane. PhD thesis, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Faculty of Chemical and Natural Resources Engineering.


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The removal of acid gases from natural gas stream is an important process in many gas processing plants and for environmental protection. The most widely used acid gas removal technology nowadays is the absorption process using amine-based solvent. Foaming is the major cause that leads operational problems, resulting in excessive solvent losses, failure to meet treated gas specification and a reduction in gas treating capacity. Therefore, the main objectives of this research were to study the foam characteristics and the surface tension phenomenon of alkanolamines solution and to reduce their foaming promoters. The effect of natural gas impurities (foam promoters) in the blended methyldiethanolamine (MDEA)-piperazine solution such as hydrocarbon liquids, iron sulfide (dissolved solid), sodium chloride (salt), acetic acid (organic acid), methanol (hydrate inhibitor) and glycol (dehydrating agent) were investigated. The concentration of MDEA was found to significantly influence the foam activity in the solution. Iron sulfide, hydrocarbon and sodium chloride present in the solution had been identified as the impurities which apparently contributed to the high foaming tendency. At 5000 ppm concentration of impurities, the foam height achieved was 425 ml. Iron sulfide appeared to be the major foam promoter in the range of concentration solutions studied. Response surface methodology and central composite design had been applied to optimize the three factors that affected the foaming phenomenon. These factors were then correlated to the surface tension and foaming tendency. Asymmetric mixed matrix membrane (MMM) was applied to remove foam promoters in the amine solvent in order to reduce its foaming tendency. The MMM characteristics and performance were tested using scanning electron microscope, differential scanning calorimetry, Fourier transform infrared and membrane filtration tests. The contents of iron sulfide, hydrocarbon and sodium chloride as the main foam promoters had been successfully reduced as indicated by reduction of surface tension values by 12 %, 6.3% and 16 % respectively. These results indicated that membrane is a promising and viable technology to enhance the effectiveness of gas treatment system through the reduction of foam formation

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information:Thesis (Ph.D (Kejuruteraan Gas)) - Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, 2009; Supervisor : Prof. Dr Ahmad Fauzi Ismail
Divisions:Chemical and Natural Resources Engineering (Formerly known)
ID Code:16926
Deposited By: Zalinda Shuratman
Deposited On:14 Nov 2013 03:05
Last Modified:20 Jun 2017 07:23

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