Simulation of a typical and an advanced Fischer Tropsch reactor technology

Marwan Abbas, Fadwa T. Eljack, Elfatih E. Elmalik, Aswani K. Mogalicherla, Nimir O. Elbashir

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


During the past twenty years, tremendous investments from the majorplayers in the energy market have been directed towards Gas to Liquid (GTL)technology. The advantage of GTL technology in energy production is that itfurnishes a broad range of environmentally clean fuels, additives andvalue-added. While the GTL market continues to grow, there are still manyhurdles to overcome in order to optimize the use of this important technology- all of which are related to technology limitations. Our proposedproject is focused on the design ofadvanced Fischer-Tropsch synthesis (FTS) reactortechnology to facilitate operating the reaction on both conventional media (gasphase) and non-conventional media (supercritical phase). The latter assumed toprovide unique reaction medium to leverage certain advantages over thecurrent commercial technologies (slurry reactor and multi-tubular reactor) andat the same time overcome their limitations1 The main aim of this study isto develop simulation models of Fischer Tropsch Synthesis (FTS) reactortechnology. The approach todesign this novel reactor technology has been described in a previous study. The modeledreactor configurations operating at gas phase , slurryphase , near and super critical phase conditions (SCF) will be compared to existingFTS commercial reactors (Fixed Bed Reactors , Shell Bintulu Plant in Malaysia)and experimental reactors (Supercritical , Roberts and Elbashir. Simulating FTS reactors have always been a challenge. This due to their abnormalchemistry behavior that led available design tools to not best represent the FTand SCF-FT reactions. The main reactor design focus will be on SCF-FT. SCF-FThas been strongly considered to yield better fuel products. The SCF media usedhas the capability of improving the diffusivity (gas like) and heat transfer (liquidlike) . Our study will be consisting of two phases. Phase one will mainlyfocus on using the existing academia tools such as (ASPEN Plus) to modeldifferent FT reactors and then compare it to available commercial andexperimental results. This will help conclude the advantages and the disadvantagesof the existing solutions used to model the FT reactors. The second phase willbe focusing on creating our own FT and SCF-FT reactor model configuration and compareit to the experimental results. This step will be achieved using otheravailable tools such as (ASPEN Simulation Workbook (ASW) and ComputationalFluid Dynamics model (CFD)). Our final results of the reactor design is to closelyfollow the results of SCF-FT reactors previously reported .The study will alsoexamine the economic aspect of SCF-FT reactors to account for the additionalcost accompanied with the use of technology.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication11AIChE - 2011 AIChE Annual Meeting, Conference Proceedings
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Event2011 AIChE Annual Meeting, 11AIChE - Minneapolis, MN, United States
Duration: 16 Oct 201121 Oct 2011


Other2011 AIChE Annual Meeting, 11AIChE
CountryUnited States
CityMinneapolis, MN


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)

Cite this

Abbas, M., Eljack, F. T., Elmalik, E. E., Mogalicherla, A. K., & Elbashir, N. O. (2011). Simulation of a typical and an advanced Fischer Tropsch reactor technology. In 11AIChE - 2011 AIChE Annual Meeting, Conference Proceedings