LECTURE 6 INDUSTRIAL GASES. OBTAINING CO 2 FROM FERMENTATION PROCESS. Another source of CO 2 is fermentation industry If yeast is used, alcohol and CO 2 are produced Yield of CO 2 varies with mode of fermentation
Renewable fuel (Green)
Air separation methods:
Pressure swing adsorption process
Electrolysis of water
By chemical reaction in which oxygen is freed from a chemical compound
The air is compressed to about 94 psi (650 kPa or 6.5 atm) in a multi-stage compressor. It then passes through a water-cooled cooler to condense any water vapor, and the condensed water is removed in a water separator.
The air passes through a molecular sieve adsorber. The adsorber contains zeolite and silica gel-type adsorbents, which trap the carbon dioxide, heavier hydrocarbons, and any remaining traces of water vapor. Periodically the adsorber is cleaned to remove the trapped impurities. This usually requires two adsorbers operating in parallel, so that one can continue to process the air-flow while the other one is flushed
The pretreated air stream is split. A small portion of the air is diverted through a compressor, where its pressure is boosted. It is then cooled and allowed to expand to nearly atmospheric pressure. This expansion rapidly cools the air, which is injected into the cryogenic section to provide the required cold temperatures for operation.
The main stream of air passes through one side of a pair of plate fin heat exchangers operating in series, while very cold oxygen and nitrogen from the cryogenic section pass through the other side. The incoming air stream is cooled, while the oxygen and nitrogen are warmed. In some operations, the air may be cooled by passing it through an expansion valve instead of the second heat exchanger. In either case, the temperature of the air is lowered to the point where the oxygen, which has the highest boiling point, starts to liquefy.
The air stream—now part liquid and part gas—enters the base of the high-pressure fractionating column. As the air works its way up the column, it loses additional heat. The oxygen continues to liquefy, forming an oxygen-rich mixture in the bottom of the column, while most of the nitrogen and argon flow to the top as a vapor.
The liquid oxygen mixture, called crude liquid oxygen, is drawn out of the bottom of the lower fractionating column and is cooled further in the subcooler. Part of this stream is allowed to expand to nearly atmospheric pressure and is fed into the low-pressure fractionating column. As the crude liquid oxygen works its way down the column, most of the remaining nitrogen and argon separate, leaving 99.5% pure oxygen at the bottom of the column.
Meanwhile, the nitrogen/argon vapor from the top of the high-pressure column is cooled further in the subcooler. The mixed vapor is allowed to expand to nearly atmospheric pressure and is fed into the top of the low-pressure fractionating column. The nitrogen, which has the lowest boiling point, turns to gas first and flows out the top of the column as 99.995% pure nitrogen.
The argon, which has a boiling point between the oxygen and the nitrogen, remains a vapor and begins to sink as the nitrogen boils off. As the argon vapor reaches a point about two-thirds the way down the column, the argon concentration reaches its maximum of about 7-12% and is drawn off into a third fractionating column, where it is further recirculated and refined. The final product is a stream of crude argon containing 93-96% argon, 2-5% oxygen, and the balance nitrogen with traces of other gases.
If higher purity is needed, one or more additional fractionating columns may be added in conjunction with the low-pressure column to further refine the oxygen product. In some cases, the oxygen may also be passed over a catalyst to oxidize any hydrocarbons. This process produces carbon dioxide and water vapor, which are then captured and removed.
If the oxygen is to be liquefied, this process is usually done within the low-pressure fractionating column of the air separation plant. Nitrogen from the top of the low-pressure column is compressed, cooled, and expanded to liquefy the nitrogen. This liquid nitrogen stream is then fed back into the low-pressure column to provide the additional cooling required to liquefy the oxygen as it sinks to the bottom of the column.
It is one of the life-sustaining elements on Earth and is needed by all animals.
Oxygen and acetylene are combusted together to provide the very high temperatures needed for welding and metal cutting
When oxygen is cooled below -297° F (-183° C), it becomes a pale blue liquid that is used as a rocket fuel.
It is used in blast furnaces to make steel, and is an important component in the production of many synthetic chemicals, including ammonia, alcohols, and various plastics.