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Development and operation of a microwave plasma system to reform of tar from coal gasification processes

Grant number: 12/14568-6
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2012
Effective date (End): August 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Physical Sciences and Mathematics - Physics
Cooperation agreement: Vale-FAPEMIG-FAPESPA
Principal Investigator:Gilberto Petraconi
Grantee:Henrique de Souza Medeiros
Home Institution: Divisão de Ciências Fundamentais (IEF). Instituto Tecnológico de Aeronáutica (ITA). Ministério da Defesa (Brasil). São José dos Campos , SP, Brazil
Company:Ministério da Defesa (Brasil). Instituto Tecnológico de Aeronáutica (ITA). Divisão de Ciências Fundamentais (IEF)

Abstract

The aim of this project is to study the conversion of heavy hydrocarbons in synthesis gas (H2 and CO) through the use of cold plasmas operated at pressures of about 100-760 Torr. To make that will be used a microwave plasma system which is applied to benefit the manufacturing process of the synthesis gas obtained from the compound generated in the gasification of coal or biomass. These products include tar (condensable hydrocarbons, such as furans, phenols), non-condensable hydrocarbons such as methane, ethane, and also dioxins. The function of the reformer is to increase the generation of synthesis gas at the expense of larger molecules that are constituents of tar. This mechanism is based on collisional processes between species (electrons, ions, radicals, neutral molecules) of the plasma. This environment chemically reactive is created in the plasma reactor, through which circulates the flow of molecules derived from the tar and also the injected gas to assist the reform process such as air or oxygen and water vapor. Therefore, maximize the conversion of species from tar to hydrogen and carbon monoxide is wanted with this process. The focus of this work will be in the plasmas process generated by microwave discharge type. This reactor, after optimization, will integrate a gasification system at the laboratory scale for testing and possible innovations in the gasification process by plasma. The reform process will be evaluated for the effects of the injection of gases such as air, steam and oxygen. The discharge parameters will be monitored in order to obtain a correlation with the results of the gasification processed by plasma for improving the selectivity of reaction and conversion efficiency. (AU)

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