Biofuels Sub-task Presentation II | Summary and Q&A

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July 24, 2012
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MIT OpenCourseWare
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Biofuels Sub-task Presentation II

TL;DR

A progress report on integrating biomass production with a nuclear reactor complex to produce Fischer-Tropsch fuel, discussing the overall design and key processes involved.

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Questions & Answers

Q: Why was switchgrass chosen as the feedstock for biomass production?

Switchgrass was chosen due to its high viability in dry climates, easy multiplication, high energy density, and lack of competition with food crops.

Q: What is the purpose of the silver gasification process in the project?

The silver gasification process is used to avoid combustion with air, which dilutes the synthetic gas (syngas), and instead uses an oxygen air separation unit to generate the necessary heat for gasification.

Q: How is acid gas, such as carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulfide, removed from the syngas?

Acid gas removal is achieved through a series of processes, including cyclones for removing solid particles, a water scrubber to remove impurities, and an amine plant and low-cath plant for further purification.

Q: How is the Fischer-Tropsch reaction carried out in the project?

The Fischer-Tropsch reaction takes place in a slur phase bubble column reactor, where syngas is passed through a catalyst suspended in inert oil to produce liquid products, such as gasoline and diesel blend stocks.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • The project aims to integrate biomass production with a nuclear reactor complex to produce Fischer-Tropsch fuel.

  • The process involves various steps such as switchgrass densification, gasification, acid gas removal, Fischer-Tropsch reaction, distillation, and refining.

  • Key considerations include carbon dioxide management, heat exchange, and hydrogen supply.

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