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Title: Kinetic studies of gas-liquid reactions in capillary microreactors
Author: Psyrraki, C.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8502 2670
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2015
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The main aim of this study was to develop a rate expression for the first stage reaction for the production of methyl methyl acrylate (methyl ester of methacrylic acid or MMA) using Lucite International Alpha Process. MMA is an acrylic glass material which main features such as transparency, high hardness, resistance to fracture and chemical stability makes it suitable for a wide range of industrial applications. The first stage of the Alpha process is the synthesis of methyl propionate (MeP) from ethylene, carbon monoxide and methanol over homogenous Pd catalyst with selectivity higher than 99.9%. It is a gas-liquid catalytic reaction that takes place at high temperature and pressure conditions. For the kinetic study of this system, experimental studies were performed under a range of inlet conditions (temperature, catalyst, gas and liquid inlet compositions) using capillary microreactors. Moreover, a kinetic model for this system was developed and its validity was verified by comparison with experimental results. Furthermore, a reactor model was developed to simulate the reaction process and was further used for parametric estimation of the kinetic model. For the validation of the reactor model, experiments with a model system, a reaction with well-studied kinetics were performed and the model predictions were compared with the experimentally obtained results. For the complete characterisation of the gas-liquid system, hydrodynamic study of the system was conducted to identify the flow pattern, the void fraction and the mass transfer characteristics of the system. Furthermore, hydrodynamic studies on other gas-liquid systems were performed to investigate the effect of parameters such as the gas-to-liquid ratio, the channel diameter and the fluid properties on the hydrodynamic characteristics of the systems. Comparison with previous hydrodynamic models was conducted and a new correlation for the prediction of void fraction in gas-liquid systems under similar conditions was suggested.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available