Chemical Engineering Research & Design, Vol.100, 72-80, 2015
Influence of Ni/SiO2 activity on the reaction pathway in sunflower oil hydrogenation
Sunflower oil hydrogenation process was studied on silica supported nickel catalysts. Three texturally different silica gel materials were used as supports for synthesis of Ni/SiO2 catalyst precursors. After precursors' reduction and paraffin oil impregnation, obtained catalysts were used in sunflower oil hydrogenation reaction. For catalytic test, a new type of catalyst feeder was constructed and presented. The hydrogenation activity of catalysts was monitored through the decrease of refractive index and hydrogen consumption. A correlation between iodine value, refractive index and hydrogen consumption was established. The reaction rate constants were obtained from fatty acid composition of partially hydrogenated oil and further studied for the investigation of possible reaction pathways. Kinetics and mechanisms were evaluated and tested with the aim to reduce the number of reactions participating in the reaction scheme. A set of ordinary differential equations, corresponding to the investigated model, was solved numerically by Gear's algorithm. It was shown that a number of significant reactions in a model depend on the activity of catalysts. More active catalyst results in more reaction pathways and more side chemical reactions. (C) 2015 The Institution of Chemical Engineers. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.