PITA Fiscal Year 2015 Projects

Energy Efficient Cryogenic Adsorption Process

Lead University: Lehigh University
PI: Dr. James T. Hsu, Lehigh University
Co-PI(s): Dr. Lori Herz
PA Industry: Dynalene

Large scale preservation of human organs, biopharmaeuticals, and specialty chemicals, also in the process of liquefaction of natural gas, an energy efficient cryogenic process will be required to reach ultra low temperature. Using liquefied nitrogen as refrigerant in conventional process will require to recover the nitrogen gas and compress it back to liquid phase for recycle with expensive compressor. This approach will consume a lot of energy and nitrogen. Also, this process has to be operated under very high pressure. In this project , a heat transfer liquid based on hydrocarbon compounds will be used for the cryogenic process. The heat transfer liquid has quite favorable thermal properties for heat transfer, especially in ultra low temperature applications, it has a very low freezing temperature of -120 C. However, this temperature is considerably much lower than freezing temperature of water, therefore any water that remains in the heat transfer liquid significantly reduces the performance at ultra low temperature applications caused by the ice formation. Thus, this small fraction of water has to be removed continuously at -100 C. A cyogenic adsorption process based on various zeolite adsorbents to remove water will be tested and developed for large scale commerical cryogenic applications.