International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, Vol.44, No.4, 2298-2311, 2019
CO2 reforming of methane for H-2 production in a membrane reactor as CO2 utilization: Computational fluid dynamics studies with a reactor geometry
Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) studies have been carried out for CO2 reforming of methane in both a packed-bed reactor (PBR) and a membrane reactor (MR) with a heating tube as a heat source at the center of a reactor. The effect of a reactor geometry on the temperature and H-2 and CH4 concentration profiles within a PBR and a MR have been investigated numerically by changing the distance of membranes from the center of a heating tube (Dcenter = radial distance between the center of the reactor and the center of the membrane) for a given heating tube temperature. The distances of the center of the membranes in a MR from the reactor center were 0.028 m, 0.03 m, 0.033 m, 0.035 m, 0.038 m, 0.04 m, 0.042 m, 0.044 m and 0.045 m. With the help of COMSOL Multiphysics modeling software, it was possible to visualize temperature and concentration profiles both axially and radially. Interestingly, it was found that H-2 enhancement is proportional to both Dcenter and the magnitude of the H-2 flux. Further studies for the effect of a heating tube radius proposed an optimum radius for a maximum H-2 yield enhancement in a MR. Consequently, it turned out that CFD studies can be used as a critical guideline for an efficient reactor design focusing on a reactor geometry in a MR for given conditions. (C) 2018 Hydrogen Energy Publications LLC. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.