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Energies 2019, 12(3), 469; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12030469

Kinetics and Reactor Design Aspects of Selective Methanation of CO over a Ru/γ-Al2O3 Catalyst in CO2/H2 Rich Gases

Chair of Chemical Engineering, Center of Energy Technology, University Bayreuth, 95440 Bayreuth, Germany
The original paper was presented in: Garbis, P., Kern, C., Jess, A. Selective CO methanation for PEMFC applications. Riehl, R., Preißinger, M., Eames, I., Tierney, M., Eds. In Proceedings of the Heat Powered Cycles Conference 2018, Bayreuth, Germany, 16–19 September 2018. ISBN: 978-0-9563329-6-7.
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Received: 11 January 2019 / Revised: 29 January 2019 / Accepted: 30 January 2019 / Published: 1 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from Heat Power Cycles Conference 2018)
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Abstract

Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs) for household applications utilize H2 produced from natural gas via steam reforming followed by a water gas shift (WGS) unit. The H2-rich gas contains CO2 and small amounts of CO, which is a poison for PEMFCs. Today, CO is mostly converted by addition of O2 and preferential oxidation, but H2 is then also partly oxidized. An alternative is selective CO methanation, studied in this work. CO2 methanation is then a highly unwanted reaction, consuming additional H2. The kinetics of CO methanation in CO2/H2 rich gases were studied with a home-made Ru catalyst in a fixed bed reactor at 1 bar and 160–240 °C. Both CO and CO2 methanation can be well described by a Langmuir Hinshelwood approach. The rate of CO2 methanation is slow compared to CO. CO2 is directly converted to methane, i.e., the indirect route via reverse water gas shift (WGS) and subsequent CO methanation could be excluded by the experimental data and in combination with kinetic considerations. Pore diffusion may affect the CO conversion (>200 °C). The kinetic equations were applied to model an adiabatic fixed bed methanation reactor of a fuel cell appliance. View Full-Text
Keywords: ruthenium catalyst; CO methanation; kinetic modeling; fixed bed reactor; process simulation ruthenium catalyst; CO methanation; kinetic modeling; fixed bed reactor; process simulation
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Garbis, P.; Kern, C.; Jess, A. Kinetics and Reactor Design Aspects of Selective Methanation of CO over a Ru/γ-Al2O3 Catalyst in CO2/H2 Rich Gases. Energies 2019, 12, 469.

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