CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED PATENT APPLICATIONS
This application incorporates by this reference U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/783,963, filed Mar. 20, 2006; U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/786,959, filed Mar. 29, 2006; U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/799,515, filed May 11, 2006. This application is a Continuation-In-Part of U.S. application Ser. No. 11/490,861, filed Jul. 21, 2006, incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. This application claims priority from Provisional Application U.S. Application 60/931,837, filed May 25, 2007, incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. This application claims priority from Provisional Application U.S. Application 60/950,249, filed Jul. 17, 2007, incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. This application claims priority from Provisional Application U.S. Application 60/953,741, filed Aug. 3, 2007, incorporated herein by reference in its entirety. This application claims priority from Provisional Application U.S. Application 60/967,658, filed Sep. 6, 2007, incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
The present invention relates to improved production methods and production equipment for fluid fuels including but not limited to ethanol, gasoline, hydrogen, naphtha (for olefin manufacture) and/or diesel but most particularly, “designed” synthetic diesel fuels for use in corresponding diesel engines. Diesel of any Cetane value, such as diesel having a formula range between the following Cetane values: (C10H22), to (C15H32); and including diesel fuel with higher (greater) and/or lower Cetane values, are the most important but also any type of gasoline, ethanol can be readily and most economically manufactured from renewable bio-mass sources. Additionally, the production of large volumes of hydrogen gas (H2) can be co-produced as a primary or secondary byproduct for any applicable use but most importantly for fuel required by hydrogen cell powered vehicles. The above referenced fluid fuels plus many others, are manufactured by synthesizing syn-gas (a blend of gases including CO and H2 in any suitable proportions and which may include some CO2 and H2O vapor), the ratio of gases relative to each other can be “trimmed” (an industry term meaning adjustment of the referenced ratio between the gases and, most likely between the CO and H2 content of the syn-gas to provide for greater production efficiency of the fluid fuel(s) sought); such “trimming” may be achieved by exposure or direct contact with a suitable catalyst(s). Alternatively, the syn-gas can be transferred through a single or series of membrane (manufactured, for example, from a polypropylene or other polyolefin extruded and “blown” film to provide a membrane tube) conduits which in turn, is enclosed in larger diameter conduit maintained at a selected pressure and temperature such as 50 psi and 90° C. to reduce an excessive proportion of hydrogen gas.
In particular, the present patent application relates to the field of renewable fluid fuel production methods as required for use in internal combustion engines, jet engines and turbines typically installed in automobiles, buses, trucks, railroad locomotives, ships and airplanes.
The field of invention also includes the production equipment required for the manufacture of the fluid fuels but also other liquids such as naphtha and lubricating oils of any type including timber treatment oils and/or varnishes, stain removers (from clothes) and engine cleaning fluids able to dissolve and remove other oils, dirt and grime from an engine; any other Fischer Tropsch fluids can also be produced with the referenced production equipment.
The primary purpose, however, for developing the herein specified production equipment and methods for manufacturing the fuels disclosed is to facilitate displacement of fossil fuels (including any type of coal including soft wet fuels such as peat and lignite through to the hardest black anthracite, which are presently consumed in massive quantities during operation of the vehicles indicated above and electric power production, in what appears to be exponentially increasing quantities. Such production of renewable fuels and liquids indicated above, from biomass material sources can facilitate a corresponding reduction in the release of greenhouse gases presently released by the direct, typically untreated exhausting into Earth's atmosphere.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
The present invention provides a reliable, reproducible, and cost effective method of fluid fuels manufacture by synthesizing syn-gas in novel and more efficient steam reforming equipment and Fischer Tropsch synthesizing reactors, for the production of said syn-gas by equipment housed within standard containerized configuration of substantially reduced size when compared to gasification and Fischer Tropsch installations built by others.
The invention disclosed herein includes carbon steam reforming equipment integrated with Fischer-Tropsch [F-T] reactors of small to medium output (wherein firstly; for example, a large output, commercial system, including a Fluidized Bed, Steam Reformer integrated with a correspondingly sized F-T system, and a production capacity of 200,000 barrel per day (BPD) of refined fluids production out-put, with air separation equipment of adequate production capacity to provide sufficient (greater than 100 tons per day) oxygen gas; the O2 is injected directly into the fluidized bed combustion chamber, thereby burning sufficient crude oil or natural gas feed stock, to drive the steam reforming reactions (listed below) with suitable F-T production equipment costs approximately US $4 billion to US $5 billion [including air separation equipment for pure oxygen supply to the steam reformer]; and a medium sized steam reforming and F-T system of 20,000 BPD output costs about $25,000 per single BPD output equal to approximately $0.5 billion cost).
The present invention, having a production capacity of about 1,000 BPD and costing about US $5 to $9 million for each system is disclosed herein with methods of utilizing block heat storage to, most preferably, use “off peak” green or hydro electricity as opposed to burning a large component of the bio-mass feed-stock to correspondingly generate adequate heat to drive the endothermic steam reforming reactions. In addition, by installing small renewable fuels production systems regionally, when located in complete, operable facilities, built across the USA, with each system having sufficient capacity to satisfy the fuel needs of the entire respective regions population fuel needs, the cost of each gallon of fuel should be lower than as it is presently. The present method of renewable fuel production, as disclosed herein, is most preferably located as close as possible to one or more of the numerous biomass sources within the USA such as, and most preferably, close to the logging industries of the Pacific North West (PNW) forests and additionally, adjacent to one of the many hydro electric dams located along the Columbia River and its tributaries. Renewable fuel costs, produced in this way, can be most competitive when compared with the full, actual costs of fossil fuels derived from crude oil sourced from Middle Eastern oil wells; these include among other costs; the total deep water or deep ground crude oil extraction costs from deep drilled wells, military equipment and costs of personnel (human life) costs, shipping, the higher refining of lower grade, high sulfur content crude oil, further pipeline and/or trucking transport costs associated with delivery to the final point of sale and consumption, plus the massive loss of cash, paid to the benefit of the oil well owners often residing in remote locations of foreign lands.
When compared with the highly efficient conversion method of wet biomass (wherein water contained is a reactant in the steam reforming production of syn-gas) to renewable fuels, wherein the source of endothermic, reaction supporting, heat is provided by electricity generated during the “off peak” periods of each day, stored in high temperature liquefied metals such as aluminum or copper; or pressurized zinc or tin, held in pressure vessels so as to elevate the boiling point of the metals which, in one preferred embodiment, are maintained within a temperature range between a low of 700° C. and a high of 1,200° C. Other metals used as “block heat storage banks” may comprise a single electric heating element but most preferably a mixture of molten metal's, selected from the list herein below disclosed or others not listed but in any event the molten metal(s) is enclosed within a sealed, substantially leak-proof, insulated vessel manufactured from suitable materials such as nickel aluminite (NiAl), Inconel or Incoloy (Registered trade marks) a combination thereof or any other suitable materials. A stream of suitably trimmed syn-gas, produced according to the methods disclosed herein, utilizing equipment also disclosed and arranged for convenient installation, transport and operation (NB: equipment may be skid mounted within a series of 20′FCL (shipping containers and/or 40′FCL foot-printed skids, facilitating relocation and rapid installation of the complete set of equipment required to produce syn-gas as required. The stream of syn-gas is then transferred via a conduit under suitable pressure to a Fischer Tropsch reactor comprising an enclosed space containing a selected catalyst (or catalysts) arranged within a first space, mounted onto a framework which is, itself, mounted onto a centrally disposed, vertically oriented shaft so as to enable motor driven rotation or spinning of the framework (within said first space and catalyst attached thereto). The conduit, within which said syn-gas is transferred, is connected so as to direct the syn-gas into the conduit provided by a hollow shaft 802 as is shown in FIG. 6( ii).
A homogenizer, for example, a high pressure homogenizer is integrated into the biodiesel production system. The homogenizer can be inserted between the upstream colloid mill (in which the combined input stream of CO2, ethanol and triglyceride streams are thoroughly “preblended”), and the downstream reactor microchannel, for the purpose of insuring the complete mixing and elimination of any “d-mixing” or separation of the triglycerides from the super critical ethanol and the CO2 solvent. The colloid mill may be located on either side of the homogenizer (i.e., upstream or downstream thereof). One example of the homogenizer that can be used is a very high pressure homogenizer manufactured by Niro, Inc. in Columbia, Md. It should be understood that other types of homogenizers and additional related equipment can be integrated into the biodiesel production system.
The bio-mass, may include, bagasse, sugar beet waste, canned corn or vegetable waste, cotton waste, sewage sludge, wheat straw, tree trunk bark and associated branches, and the roots of harvested trees, hay (such as is grown in the Pacific North West and most notably Oregon for grass seed production) and/or rice straw. Irrespective of the bio-mass source it is converted to carbon, water and ash with electrically powered heating in specially modified extruders (typically used in plastics sheet production).
The centralized production of transport fuels in massive quantities also requires distribution to consumers often located in remote regions relative to the point of production and is shipped, typically, via long distance road transport and/or rail shipping to consumers and industry. This present production method for synthesized fuels and plastics raw material production, has been built with complete gasification and Fischer Tropsch synthesizing systems with 10,000 BPD, 20,000 BPD up to 200,000 BPD or more—Barrels Per Day (BPD) or equivalent input capacities of crude oil, lignite or coal input streams which, until now have been considered the lowest quantities so as to avoid inefficiencies in processing such commodities into diesel, gasoline, methanol or naphtha, which have become inefficient due to the steady increase in costs of the imported raw materials from countries that are at best, with few exceptions, considered unreliable and politically unstable, and in addition, are located great distances from the most significant markets for the processed and finished commodities. Massive shipping tankers endanger the ecosystems through which they regularly travel to deliver what has become a continually increasing, exceedingly expensive commodity. It is now clear that “economies of scale” for production of renewable fuels from biomass has become competitive and with much lower quantity input BPD equivalents (except for oxygen production which is normally required to facilitate the use of the respective input [i.e. biomass, lignite, coal etc.] raw material for the massive heating required by way of combustion; in this way heat can be readily provided (to enable the gasification of the raw material input) by injecting measured amounts of pure oxygen into the gasification pressure vessel with the natural gas and/or black coal raw materials. Regional production that utilizes zero to low cost, but relatively much smaller quantities of locally available biomass raw materials not only requires efficient and affordable equipment but this equipment must be substantially smaller in scale and of much lower cost when compared to the massive plant that is now populating the regions where low cost natural gas is available. Furthermore the equipment required for regional production of biomass to liquid (BTL) fuels must be efficient while producing relatively small quantities of fuel for local consumption such as in rural and agricultural communities across the USA and in those regions furthest from existing fuel processing facilities in addition to having adequate quantities of biomass materials required such as animal waste and crop stover and straw etcetera. Additionally the equipment can also be employed to convert the massive waste streams emanating from the densely populated cities. Such waste streams comprise paper and board, plastics such as polyethylene packaging, and plastics having become too contaminated to recycle etcetera. The disclosure herein also includes a method of CO2 collection such as the massive CO2 exhaust streams from coal powered electric power production facilities and also CO2 from fermentation processes used in ethanol production and also alcohol production for human consumption, albeit that these CO2 streams are not derived directly from the burning of fossil fuels. The collection of CO2 from any source provides an opportunity to reduce carbon emissions resulting from human endeavor and then the sequestration of, for example, the liquefied CO2 by high pressure (up to and even greater than 14,000 psi), positive displacement, pumping directly down the shaft and into suitable low production or sealed and abandoned oil wells which may result in an opportunity to recover a corresponding quantity of fossil fuel from a USA source resulting in the displacement of an equal amount of imported crude oil.
There is further provided a method of gasifying a blend of raw materials to produce a syn-gas, in preparation for synthesizing, in large part, renewable fluid bio-fuel, most preferably comprising a high cetane Diesel. Aviation fuel and plastics raw material feedstock (i.e. naphtha, from which for example, polyolefin plastics such as polyethylene and polypropylene can be manufactured—in which case there would be at least two fluid products synthesized, including synthetic Diesel and Aviation fuel [CnH2+2], and naphtha [having an averaged formula of approximately C8H18]. Wherein said synthesized fluids are derived from a first stream of super heated steam at a selected temperature between 600° C. and 1,400° C., but most preferably about 1,000° C. and controlled pressure up to 200 bar or greater, arranged so that a second, similarly heated and pressurized stream of gaseous CO2 are combined together and transferred via an electrically heated conduit. The conduit can be fabricated from Inconel 625 or similar metal able to tolerate the selected temperature and pressure conditions. The mixture is transported to a first electrically heated, enclosed and sealed reactor which is also maintained at a selected temperature and pressure. Providing a third anoxic stream of pulverized carbon derived from any suitable source such as pet-coke and/or suitable coal such as black subituminous, oxygen free and powdered so as to ensure said pulverized particles do not exceed about 200 microns across the widest dimension. An electricity supply for heating said first, second and third streams and equipment as required is most preferably provided directly from wind turbine generator sources or alternatives such as solar, tidal, hydro controlling the relative proportions of said first, second and third streams, NB: electric supply is equivalent to about 34% of all energy in a mass balance equation including said three streams and all matter required. In this way the installation of an air separator for supply of the corresponding quantity of oxygen is no longer needed and the additional carbon or coal that would otherwise be provided to enable combustion of the coal transferred with the gases into the reactor burn and provide the heat needed for the reactor. Anoxic conditions are required within the conduits and vessels through which the product stream, through to finished fluids are transferred. Pulverized carbon/coal and/or PET coke particles of about <200 microns at widest dimension. Note: PET-coke, typically a 90% carbon content solid residue, but carbon content decreases with lower grade crude oil, periodically extracted from crude oil refining equipment.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
The foregoing aspects and many of the attendant advantages of this invention will become more readily appreciated by reference to the following detailed description, when taken in conjunction with the accompanying drawings, wherein:
FIG. 1 shows in diagrammatic format a cross section through several items of equipment according to the present invention;
FIG. 1( i) shows a cross section through the vertical plane intersecting the center line of centrally located shaft of a Fischer-Tropsch reactor arranged according to the present invention;
FIG. 1( ii) shows a horizontal cross section through the Fischer-Tropsch reactor of FIGURE (i), arranged according to the present invention;
FIG. 1( iii) shows a vertical cross section through a segment (Area “A”) of the Fischer-Tropsch reactor, of FIGURE (i), arranged according to the present invention;
FIG. 2 shows a cross section bisecting the vertical plane intersecting the center line of a centrally located shaft of a Fischer-Tropsch reactor arranged according to the present invention;
FIG. 3 shows an isometric view of gasification equipment comprising an elongated pressure vessel enclosing a first, spiraled, conduit section manufactured from high temperature (900° C.+) tolerant steel, connected at the upper end of a second, straight, conduit section of similar cross sectional dimensions to said first conduit, located centrally having a common center line with said enclosing vessel, and a horizontal, third, straight conduit section connected to the lower end of said first conduit section, according to according to the present invention;
FIG. 3( i) shows a cross section “X”-“X” through the gasification equipment of FIG. 3, according to the present invention;
FIG. 4 shows a diagrammatic side view outline of equipment assembled for the selective collection and reduction to liquid of carbon dioxide gas from engine or furnace exhaust according to the present invention;
FIG. 6 shows a partial cross section side view of equipment designed for the gasification of pulverized carbon according to the present invention;
FIG. 6( i) illustrates a cross-section view of several gasification of pulverized carbon devices;
FIG. 6( ii) shows a cross section through the vertical plane intersecting the center line of centrally located shaft of a Fischer-Tropsch reactor arranged according to the present invention;
FIG. 7 shows a diagrammatic plan view of the outline of equipment, represented by boxes and circles, arranged to show the normal operating location of the equipment relative to each equipment component wherein the equipment is arranged to convert organic, biomass feedstock to renewable fuels such as diesel according to the present invention;
FIG. 8 shows a partial cross sectioned side view, through the centerline of an enclosed, tubular profiled pressure vessel with hemispherical end caps of equipment designed for the gasification of pulverized carbon by the steam reforming method according to the present invention;
FIG. 8( i) shows a cross section to show the construction of the wall composition of the pressure vessel represented by item 5012 in FIG. 7 according to the present invention;
FIG. 9 shows a cross section side view, through the centerline of an enclosed, tubular profiled pressure vessel with hemispherical end caps of equipment with upper and lower enclosing heat exchangers arranged for the gasification of pulverized carbon by the steam reforming method according to the present invention;
FIG. 9( i) shows a cross section side view, through the centerline of an enclosed, tubular profiled pressure vessel with hemispherical end caps of equipment with upper and lower enclosing heat exchangers arranged for the gasification of pulverized carbon by the steam reforming method according to the present invention;
FIG. 10 is a cross-section of a cyclone through its centerline including a connecting upper conduit, a lower connecting conduit and an integrated input volute.
FIG. 11 is a schematic diagrammatic illustration of exemplary embodiments of various industrial processes and equipment used to produce liquid fuel emission products from coal fired electricity generating plants.
FIG. 12 is a cross-section of an exemplary embodiment of an apparatus to mix and homogenize fluids used in the production of bio-diesel fuel.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS
FIG. 1 illustrates, in diagrammatic form, the general layout of an installation of equipment for the production of synthetic bio-fuels derived from virtually any biomass and providing an opportunity to manufacture renewable fuels as an alternative to fossil fuels. The renewable fuels, produced from vegetation matter, can be used as alternatives to diesel or gasoline and also, and by way of example, polyolefin (polyethylene) plastics can be synthesized from a base feedstock, naphtha or ethylene which is a liquid at ambient conditions by, and in particular the polyolefin group of plastics including polypropylene, low density and high density polyethylene, and others.
The reaction is catalyzed by metals such as platinum, nickel, tungsten, chrome, ruthenium and molybdenum.
In a preferred embodiment, the process disclosed herein comprises catalyst lined temperature controlled channels, such as the channel represented by the space between member 33 and disc 34 of FIG. 2 which may not exceed about 100 microns and through which syn-gas can be pumped in the direction showed by arrow 38, at a selected temperature of about 240° C. and pressure controlled by said pump at about 200 psi, with the temperature controlled by disc profiled heat exchanger 33 is for the conversion of any biomass, but in particular a biomass sometimes referred to as “Brewers Mash” and derived during the production of ethanol in a fermentation process wherein corn is the primary source of the sugars required and which yields a large quantity of “Brewers-Mash” and corn oil. The corn oil can be separated from the brewer's mash and converted to bio-diesel using the methods disclosed in the above referenced patent applications. Ethanol derived from the fermentation process of the corn is combined with the corn oil with a quantity of carbon dioxide transferred through a micro channel heat exchanger similar to the equipment described in association with FIG. 2 herein at a suitable pressure such as about 2,500 psi and temperature such as about 150° C. to 250° C., resulting in production of bio-diesel and glycerol. The glycerol is separated from the bio-diesel and retained in a suitable storage vessel until required in a process for the preparing of the biomass associated with FIG. 1 herein. The equipment shown in FIG. 1 in diagrammatic format is a side view cross sectional diagram illustrating each component and the manner in which it is interfaced and connected to the adjacent components. Each component performs a required process and when the equipment is installed in the way shown syn-gas (synthesis gas, or water gas) comprising hydrogen (H2) and carbon monoxide (CO), ash and other minor metals representing a very small percentage of the total input and the metals are relatively rare, such as potassium, sodium etcetera. In general, a CO:H2 ratio of about 55:45 or 2.0:1.61 is required for synthesis. The syn-gas is produced in a ratio of 1 carbon monoxide molecule (CO) for each hydrogen molecule (H2) which represents a 50:50 ratio, however most preferably the synthesis gas having a ratio of 55:45 or 1:0.82 is required for the preferred synthesis to occur. Gases rich in hydrogen can also be used, however hydrogen causes a shift in the composition of the product with a proportional increase in the ratio of hydrocarbons which are volatile at lower temperatures including the C3 and C4 hydrocarbons. The ratio of CO to H2 can be modified by replacing a proportion of steam used in production of syn-gas as will be described below with carbon dioxide. The gasification medium will most preferably comprise 27% by volume of carbon dioxide and 73% by volume of superheated steam which will attain a ratio of carbon monoxide to hydrogen of 55:45 or of 1:0.82. The syn-gas will be composed of 12.7% carbon dioxide, 47.7% carbon monoxide, 39% H2 with a minor remaining percentage (0.2%) of methane (CH4) with the balance being ash. The synthesis gas specified above is most preferably passed through a scrubbing process which will remove CO2 and methane. The process may also produce organic sulfur which can be removed and stored suitably prior to sale as commodity sulfur. The purpose of the equipment is to produce synthetic diesel. The desirable synthetic diesels produced has a density of about 850 g/liter (gasoline density equals about 720 g/liter or 15% less than diesel when converted to heat by burning, typically diesel delivers about 41 megajoules (MJ) per liter which is substantially greater than gasoline (US—gas; Britain, and Australia—petrol) which produces less than 35 MJ/liter which is also about 15% less than is derived from diesel. Production of diesel is generally simpler to refine than gasoline and should cost less accordingly. Most preferably the diesel produced in this process will have a high cetane number and low to no sulfur content which normally will be atypical property of diesel produced in the process described herein. Higher cetane or carbon content synthetic diesel is preferred such as C15H32 which can be preferentially produced when the corresponding catalyst(s) such as a cobalt based catalyst, is provided. The biomass used in the process described in association with FIG. 1 for the production of syn-gas may include a wide range of substantially waste items such as the bark of trees, sawdust, any plant matter (hemp or straw). It can also be produced from grain such as wheat, barley, corn, or from food scraps, garbage (for example, discarded cardboard and waste paper products) and sewage sludge however, in all cases conversion of these materials to carbon by sufficient heat application, can all be used to produce synthesis gas (Syn-gas) which after purification and appropriate carbon to hydrogen ratio adjustment, used as the feedstock fluids in the Fischer-Tropsch process to produce synthetic diesel and even polypropylene, for example, by way of subsequent processing of naphtha produced in the Fischer-Tropsch equipment. The process of synthesis gas production is typically referred to as biomass to liquid (BTL) and the syn-gas is then converted to synthetic diesel (a paraffin like liquid) which can then be isomerized to provide stability prior to distillation which allows adjustment or “fine tuning” of the fuel to match the requirements of engines where the liquid produced is consumed as fuel. About 60% of the distillate can be used directly as diesel fuel with the balance (40%) used in the plastics industry for example by way of naphtha production or alternatively further processed into kerosene or jet engine fuel.
Referring again to FIG. 1 a hopper 55 enclosing space 3 narrowing to a conduit 56 which connects directly to a compression device is filled with biomass in the direction shown by arrows 52. Space 3 is most preferably filled to a level greater than 75% or more specifically to provide a dense but permeable mass into which can be injected oxygen displacing gases such as carbon dioxide, nitrogen, or super heated steam. Such gases or fluids can be injected directly into conduit 56 such that atmospheric oxygen will be displaced in the opposite direction after traveling through the permeable biomass within hopper 55 in the opposite direction of arrows 52. This will result in a substantially oxygen free flow of biomass through conduit 56 and into the horizontal conduit 57 enclosing a compressing screw 5 driven by drive motor 4 such that the progressively compressed biomass is transferred in the direction shown by arrow 6. Electrically or alternatively oil heated band is tightly wound around conduit 57 and superheated steam is injected at high pressure through conduits connecting directly with the horizontal screw enclosing conduit 57 and in such a way that the biomass transferred by Archimedes screw 5 will be substantially carbonized. A connecting conduit 9 tapering to provide a cone profile with the top and base cut therefrom such that the small end of said cone is attached to pressure vessel 58 containing space 59 such that the carbonized biomass will explode into space 59 with solids dropping to the base of pressure vessel 58 in the opposite direction of arrow 19 and any gases contained therein will travel upward through space 59 in the direction shown by arrow 19 passing through conduit 21 and into space 22 of condenser 26. The condenser comprises a heat exchanger enclosed within the pressure vessel 26 wherein a fluid maintained at a lower temperature is transferred via connecting conduits in the direction shown by arrow 20 through the heat exchanger 25 and then there from via conduit 24 in the direction shown by arrow 23. A space 27 is provided to enable the accumulation of liquids within a portion of pressure vessel 26 prior to transfer via conduit 29 in the direction shown by arrow 28. The liquid may comprise substantially water which is held within space 27 and conduit 29 and prevented from transfer via conduit 31 by a 3 way valve 32 until the fluid is required to be re-blended with carbon in space 33 of high speed blender 34. The solid carbon is again treated to ensure complete carbonizing and dehydration by transfer through screw 18 enclosing conduit 60 in the direction shown by arrow 17. It is important that the carbonized biomass which comprises generally 100% friable carbon after processing thus far is not greater than about between 2 and 5 microns in diameter or maximum dimension across the widest distance for each particle. The importance of this requirement will be described herein below. Most preferably the carbon particle size will not exceed 5 microns. This is achieved by transferring the dry heated friable carbon into space 33 enclosed by vessel 34 and with a high speed impellor 35 mounted in the base of a circular cross section pressure vessel 34. All enclosed vessels in the process described in association with FIG. 1 must be capable of withstanding pressures in the order of 200 bar which is about 3,000 pounds per square inch (psi). The rotating blade 35 rotates up to 4,000 rpm and is provided with a carbide tip to each of the profiled blades at the extreme end away from the center point or axis about which the blades rotate. The mixing blades may exceed a speed at the tip of 7,000 feet per minute and the temperature of the tip becomes exceptionally high due to friction hence carbide tips are preferable. The high velocity of the impellor 35 results in the smashing of carbon particles which due to its hot dry condition is predisposed to crumbling and breaking down, however a ball mill can also provide a suitable means of reducing maximum particle size as required to not more than 10 microns wherein large steel balls mixed with smaller steel balls are blended with, the, in this instance, hot dry carbon (maintained at a selected temperature of between about 200° C. and up to 400° C.). A preferred method is to install a high speed rotating impellor driven by a suitably sized electric motor 37 coupled directly to the drive shaft 36 of the ball bearing mounted shaft coupled rigidly and perpendicular to mixing and grinding blades 35 mounted at the base of pressure vessel 34. After reducing the maximum particle size in a given batch which may be in the order of 3,000-5,000 lbs per batch contained within approximately one third of space 33, a fluid comprising condensed steam (water) and glycerol containing condensed gases and other fluids removed from the flow of biomass into space 59 of high pressure vessel 58 can be transferred through conduit 31 in a suitable controlled flow delivering a precisely measured quantity and blended with the pulverized carbon to produce a black liquid ready for further processing. FIG. 1 shows a single high speed blender 34 however most preferably multiple blenders are arranged in such a fashion to allow the systematic use of a first blender then a second blender followed by a third blender and so on, such that a continuous stream transferred from conduit 60 in the direction shown by arrow 17 can be accommodated by the transfer continuously and progressively into the high speed blender pressure vessels. Preferably a first high speed blender pressure vessel is being filled while a second vessel having similar capacities to said first blender is in process and a third blender is unloading the processed contents into conduit 81. Any number of blenders may be arranged so as to accommodate the continuous flow from conduit 60 diverted by way of a suitable multiple way valve to said first, second and third high speed blenders, thereby enabling a continuous stream into space 81 of conduit 38 continuously to provide a stream of equal mass flow to the mass flow of conduit 60 transferred in the direction shown by arrow 17 combined with the flow of material in the direction as shown by arrow 19 plus additional fluid such as glycerol which may be provided in a controlled stream via conduit 90 flowing in the direction shown by arrow 91 and into space 27 of condenser enclosing pressure vessel 26. The purpose of substantially filling vessel 26 with glycerol is to provide a means of collecting very fine solids and condensed gases including tar while allowing steam to pass through. Steam may be allowed to escape via a pressure regulated extraction port and into water condensing equipment (not shown) thereby enabling the recycling of water for use in production of super heated steam as required in the process. All matter other than condensed steam (i.e. water) with a quantity of glycerol is transferred via conduits 28 and 31 into space 33 and therein combined with carbon particles having been reduced in size to less than 4 microns and as low as less than 1 micron across. Additional glycerol or any liquid fuel such as diesel, even synthetic diesel produced in the process described herein below, can be transferred in controlled quantities via conduit 86 in the direction shown by arrow 88 and blended with the contents therein so as to produce a liquid or carbon particle suspension having a controlled and specified viscosity suitable for the processing thereof by first compressing after transfer through space 81 in manifold connecting space 33 thereto via a gate valve 80 which can be opened and closed to, when open allow transfer of said fluid into space 81 in a controlled mass flow. Space 33 may also be pressurized by the injection of carbon dioxide or alternatively syn-gas produced in this process so as to eliminate the presence of air or oxygen. However a controlled pressure in space 33 can enable the consistent transfer and mass flow of said fluid through gate valve 80 wherein an aperture is provided having a controlled size of opening with the adjustment of gate valve 80 by opening or closing the gate member in the directions shown by arrow 90. When vessel 34 is substantially empty gate valve 80 is closed and the process repeated wherein carbon pieces are transferred into space 33 in the direction shown by arrow 17 by the rotation of screw 18 within conduit 60. Member 35 comprises a two or other multiple bladed impellor having a profile most suited to the crushing of the friable carbon pieces transferred into space 33. The electric motor 37 which drives impellors 35 via a direct coupling 36 can also be used to transfer fluid from space 33 into manifold 81 and subsequently conduit 38. When vessel 34 has been substantially emptied second and third and even fourth and fifth or more vessels similar to 34 and also connected to manifold 81 and therefore conduit 38 are progressively emptied one vessel at a time. The equipment is arranged such that the duplication of hopper 55 with all other equipment as required to produce an equivalent amount ground matter through to manifold 81 duplicated for each additional vessel similar to vessel 34 is provided such that a continuous and constant mass flow of fluid, comprising said carbon suspension, is transferred to high pressure pump 40 via conduit 38. The high pressure pump 40 has the capacity to elevate the pressure of said fluid up to as much as 3000 psi or more or less and transfer the pressurized fluid into space 92 of conduit 43. During this sequence of the entire operation the fluid transferred into space 92 of conduit 43 is heated to maintain a temperature which is progressively increased as the fluid having been produced in space 33 and transferred to common rail (conduit 43) around which is provided heating jacket 42 which elevates the temperature of the fluid up to 1000 degrees C. or even more and as much as 2000 degrees C. and at such a temperature which will compensate for a reduction in temperature when transferred into space 49. Common rail 43 branches into multiple, smaller diameter, high pressure conduits such as 47, 44 or 45. At the end of each high pressure conduit is provided a nozzle which comprises a relatively small diameter orifice which is adjustable in size to provide for the atomizing of said fluid when sprayed under high pressure into space 49. Space 49 is enclosed with a cyclone comprising a cone shaped member 48 with the big end of the cone completely enclosed by an assembly of high pressure injectors, for example 47 and 46, and a suitably profiled member 94 around which is provided a volute 96 having conduit 98 connected to a suitable supply of super heated steam. The volute which includes a circular profiled conduit at 96 gradually changing in cross sectional profile to a longer and narrower slot 46 wrapping around said member 94 and connecting with a slot in the outer side of the upper end of cyclone 48 and through which super heated steam is injected at a temperature of at least 1000 degrees C. and injected into space 49 in a manner that will tend to cause the steam and the contents of cyclone 48 to spin in either an anti-clockwise or clockwise direction but as shown in FIG. 1 the direction will be in an anti-clockwise direction and at high velocity. A quantity of steam proportionate with the fluid transferred through said injectors that inject said fluid into space 49 may be transferred into conduit 92 in such a manner to blend it with the contents therein prior to the combined injection of said super heated steam and fluid into space 49. The super heated steam transferred via conduit 98 and subsequently 46 and also with the fluid transferred via conduits 44, 45, etcetera, must be at least of sufficient volume, pressure, and temperature, to react with the suspended carbon particles transferred into space 49. The contents of said fluid injected therein, having originated from vessel 34, comprises substantially all carbon particles. In fact the temperature maintained within space 33 of vessel 34 must be of a high enough value to cause any organic matter such as the glycerol and its content provided therein, into carbon. The temperature within cyclone 48 and all conduits connected therewith, and through which fluid is transferred into cyclone 48, must be maintained at a temperature that will carbonize the contents therein enclosed. Steam injected into conduit 92 blends with the carbon particles and carries them into cyclone 48 by which time the particles of carbon will have reacted with the super heated steam to produce what is commonly known as syn-gas which comprises in this instance, an equal quantity of carbon monoxide mols and hydrogen mols. Even steam transferred via volute 46 will have substantially reacted with the particles transferred into cyclone member 48. The nozzles or injectors provided at the end of each high pressure conduit 44, 45, 46, and 47 etcetera, can be arranged to open and close rapidly so as to enable spurts of steam and suspended carbon particles, and in such a manner that will result in the relative velocity of said carbon particles suspended in the super heated steam versus said super heated steam to vary and in so varying, causing a reaction that is taking place between the carbon particles and the steam to be enhanced. The endothermic reaction between said carbon particles and said super heated steam varies according to the reactants made available such as shown in the following examples:
And subsequent to production of carbon monoxide, to a minor and controlled extent;
A single molecule of each carbon monoxide and hydrogen are produced from a single molecule of super heated steam (preferably to 1,000° C. or more) and one carbon atom; this reaction can most preferably be controlled by providing heat in the form of electricity discharged via an element made from a suitable material such as Tungsten held in a position by an insulating material (such as Al2O3), or series of elements arranged to enclose the vessel or cyclone 48 as shown in FIG. 1; said elements being held in close proximity to the vessels while not contacting the vessels. Insulation can enclose the cyclone completely over all external surfaces with the electrical heating elements located between the insulation comprising an outermost layer and the cyclone (or other suitable pressure vessel) located on the inner side of the heating elements. The electrical heating elements are most preferably held in close proximity to the vessels, around which they are located but not in contact with the outer surface of the cyclone (or other vessel) and the insulation is located in a layer of adequate thickness over the entire outer surface thereby enclosing the heating elements between insulation and the outer surface of the cyclone in such a manner so as to allow heating of the cyclone or other vessels by radiation means only. In this way locating the heat source as close as possible to the inner surface of the cyclone with which the carbon and steam are in intimate contact due to the rotating action of the fluids (gases) and carbon particles being transferred through the cyclone. In this way the reaction between the reactants can occur with the least disruption due to gases produced and emanating from the surface of the carbon particles after the steam reacts with carbon at the outer surface of the carbon particles. Take note that the super heated steam can be prevented from contacting the carbon particle surface by the hydrogen and carbon monoxide gases which are formed when the super heated steam comes into contact with the carbon. By locating the electric heating elements adjacent to the outer metal surface of the cyclone and in close proximity but not in contact therewith, heat is transferred to the metal walls by intense heat radiation and through the metal walls of the cyclone which can then provide the heat required to facilitate the reaction(s) responsible for producing the syn-gas, which may, in another preferred embodiment, be as set out below;
Or alternatively and most preferably carbon dioxide can be added to the super heated steam in controlled relative proportions to yield syn-gas comprising hydrogen and carbon monoxide as follows;
Other reactions, such as the following, can occur;
However, the catalysts used in the subsequent reaction vessels can be arranged such that only desired reactions are either inhibited or enhanced, so as to result in production of a syn-gas comprising predominantly hydrogen and carbon monoxide in only those relative proportions as may be desired, with a proportion of carbon dioxide if required; therefore, by catalytic control, the various reactions can be controlled so as to produce a syn-gas comprising the desired proportions of hydrogen and carbon monoxide and if any undesirable carbon dioxide and/or steam/water vapor are present the syn-gas can be “scrubbed” with clean water and then cooled and dried prior to transferring into the final reaction vessel within which the syn-gas is converted to diesel and other matter such as naphtha.
The above reaction (line 0039) is considered to be very important since any carbon dioxide such as that produced in massive quantities by the numerous coal fired electricity generating plants often located at the coal or lignite sources around the world. Natural gas can also be used to generate electricity and any CO2 produced by burning the natural gas (or coal) can be, essentially, re-cycled instead of being dumped into the atmosphere. This re-use of CO2 in fact is facilitating the production of liquid fuels from the syn-gas which in turn was produced by applying energy in the form of electricity to produce heat needed in the endothermic reaction. Therefore, the electricity is in fact converted into liquid fuel and this method therefore provides a very efficient process in which all carbon dioxide generated by the burning of fossil fuels to generate much needed electrical power for industry and domestic purposes can be re-cycled and retained by the liquid fuel until use. Given the high volume of fossil fuels used in diesel and gas engines the above reaction can have the effect of reducing the amount of fossil fuel needed by at least 40% to 50%.
In another preferred embodiment, electricity generated by windmill or more specifically, wind generated electricity and/or hydroelectricity and/or electrical power generated by way of wave action or tidal movement can be used to convert CO2 into liquid fuel such as diesel, thereby displacing the need for producing a corresponding volume of liquid fossil fuels. Electricity, discharged via suitable heating elements to provide the heat required to generate super heated steam and otherwise or additionally heating of the vessels within which the syn-gas is produced, is most preferably generated by wind turbine and transferred to the equipment which is most preferably located adjacent to the wind turbine or within a distance such that any electrical connecting cable electrical power “line loss” is insignificant.
In another preferred embodiment the ratio of hydrogen to carbon monoxide in syn-gas required for production of a particular product such as plastics, ethanol, or any liquid fuel by Fischer-Tropsch methods can be produced in a similar manner to the production process disclosed above for fossil fuels. The three Reactions (A), (B) and (C) below, wherein the reactions (A) and (B) represents the production of syn-gas in any reactor intended for production of syn-gas disclosed herein and where Reaction (C) may be the electrolysis of water by the Hoffman process which can produce a first isolated gas of hydrogen gas and a second isolated gas of oxygen. By adding a measured quantity of the hydrogen gas to a syn-gas requiring more hydrogen or alternatively adding the syn-gas of Reaction (B) which contains more carbon monoxide, to the syn-gas requiring more carbon monoxide any blend of syn-gas can be prepared prior to transferring into the Fischer—Tropsch reactors (as disclosed herein);
Electric Heat+H20+C→H2+CO Reaction (A)
Electric Heat+H20+2CO2+3C→H2+5CO Reaction (B)
Electricity+2H20→2H2+O2 Reaction (C)
Super heated steam is aggressively corrosive, particularly at higher temperatures (above 600° C.) such as is required to achieve the above reaction as occurs with steam “reforming” and the corresponding production of carbon monoxide and hydrogen from water and carbon. The reaction is enhanced when the exposed surface area of carbon to super heated steam is increased and therefore the reduction of the carbon particle size enhances the reaction. Most preferably the carbon particle size should be reduced to about 30 microns (wherein 1 mm=1,000 microns) are small and the super heated steam has a temperature in excess of 600° C. and <1000° C. The present equipment provides for these requirements, most preferably with electric heating providing overwhelming radiated heat and in the arrangement illustrated in FIG. 1, the volute with inlet 98 which provides an inlet wherein the cross sectional profile progressively changes profile from a circular (round) cross section of the conduit 96 to an elongated aperture with short horizontal sides and longer parallel vertical sides at 46 which become closer together as the volute extends around the upper, circular section of the cyclone 48, connecting with a narrow slot communicating at a tangential disposition directly with the space 49 of the cyclone 48. The sides of said volute are heated by way of electric discharge thereby providing overwhelming heat by way of radiation for the entire member 94. The conduits such as 45 and 44 are heated in a similar fashion and the above reaction is already occurring within the enclosed pressurized conduits even before release by injection into space 49. The adequate supply of super heated steam in sufficient quantities to provide at least sufficient hydrogen and oxygen ions needed to complete the gasification of the entire quantity of carbon transferred in the pressurized streams within conduits such as 44 and 45. Therefore excessive quantities of super heated steam must be provided. Additionally the super heated steam maintained at a temperature of 800 degrees C. or more and most preferably 1000 degrees C., enters the upper region of space 49 at high velocity through the volute which includes the inlet at aperture 98 which wraps around the upper section of cyclone 48 in a circular direction with slot 46 communicating with said space 49 via unseen section of volute which has been cutaway for ease of representation and clear description of the process. The high velocity and mass flow when entering through the narrow slot communicating with the inner space of said cyclone, results in a rotation of the entire contents of said cyclone 48 at a velocity that causes any remaining carbon particles as a result of centrifugal forces, becoming carried by the rotating super heated steam around the inner wall of said cyclone 48. The super heated steam therefore carries the carbon particles in a direction which rotates around the inner cyclone wall anti-clockwise but also steadily falling toward the extraction port connecting with extruder having drive motor 50 and enclosing screw 51 in a gas tight sealed connection communicating between space 49 and enclosed screw 51 and generally in the direction shown by arrow 150. The remaining carbon particles if any do remain, are carried by said stream of super heated steam around the conical profiled inner perimeter of the inner face of cyclone 48. The rotating action causes the heaviest solids to a close and contacting proximity to the inner contour of the conical cyclone while moving steadily downward in the direction shown by arrow 150. The typical cyclonic action common with all cyclones operated correctly results in the gradually descending solids traveling at an ever increasing velocity which results from the reducing diameter of the circular direction of the super heated steam driven particles of carbon and ash. The reaction between superheated steam and carbon results in gaseous carbon monoxide and hydrogen emanating outward away from a point of reaction at the outer face of all carbon particles that remain. This reaction requires an aggressive mixing action in addition to abundant super heated steam because the emanating gas prevents the steam from contacting the surface of the carbon by the inherent insulating effect that the two gases provide, so in order to ensure that a reaction occurs the removal of the two gases from the outer surface of each carbon particle is essential. More specifically the reaction with super heated steam, which results in production of carbon monoxide and hydrogen at the exact location where super heated steam must be present for the reaction to continue. Clearly, the gas has the capacity to prevent the reaction from occurring by its inherent direction of flow outward and away from the carbon particle responsible for its production in combination with said super heated steam. To achieve the preferred conditions and enhance the desired reaction, most preferably the velocity of said steam streams must be substantially greater and most preferably in a different direction to those of the carbon particles. Such preferred conditions are provided by the action within the typical cyclone when arranged as disclosed herein above and wherein the injection which can be arranged in an intermittent manner into space 49 similar to that of a Piezo injector providing many opening and closing actions within a single second, collides with the tangential direction of an overwhelming stream of suitably heated super heated steam which immediately blasts the surfaces of any remaining carbon particles attracted to the stream where such attraction is overwhelming due to an enclosed confined space 49 and the conical profile of said cyclone 48. The inner surface of cyclone 48 is also heated by electric band heaters that cover the external surface of the cyclone while the centrifugal force causes the heavier carbon particles to contact the inner surface of the cyclone walls, thereby remaining in close proximity to the radiated heat required for the reaction in combination with super heated steam, all of which accelerate around the inner perimeter. The injection, blasting force of said stream of super heated steam, followed by the acceleration and close proximity to the source of radiated heat all combine and conspire to provide the conditions required to overcome the barrier effect of gases produced resulting in the thorough and rapid conversion to gases of said particles and any ash that remains after gasification reaction is carried firstly in the direction of arrow 150 into the spaces between the spiraling screw depressions of screw 51 rotating and carrying solid ash toward the constricted space of 151 immediately downstream from the extraction end of screw 51. The enclosure 152 of screw 51 is in direct communication with cyclone 48 via port 153 providing one of only two communications directly with exit ports of space 49. The arrangement shown provides a means of extracting solids while retaining the high pressure required within space 49 which is achieved by several purposeful arrangements and the first of these is provided by the compaction of ash within space 151 which is also of conical profile so as to provide for the compaction of ash thereby restricting the escape of high pressure gases in space 49. Fluid can be provided through conduits 52 and 54 in the direction shown by arrows 53 and 55 wherein the fluid injected comprises any suitable liquid such as water with adhesive provided in a manner that will blend with ash resulting in a heavy compacted plug of ask material that is forced through constricting space 151 in the direction shown by arrow 56 and into an enclosed vessel (not shown) that is totally sealed and only emptied either when the equipment is not in use or a valve provided at the down stream connection of member 152, connecting with said pressurized vessel. Multiple such vessels can be provided. Syn-gas produced is transferred via the open end 102 of conduit 100 and the exit pressure thereof is controlled by pump 11.
Biomass such as municipal garbage may be transferred into the equipment shown in FIG. 1 and in the direction of arrow 52, after granulating to pulverize carbon in granulator 110 arranged to reduce particle sizes of any matter transferred therein in the direction of arrow 111 and there from via conduit 113 in the direction shown by arrow 112 immediately prior to transfer into hopper 55 in the direction shown by arrows 52.
During the processing of any organic matter such as biomass and municipal garbage within the closed barrel extruder (other than inlet 8 into which super heated steam is transferred) virtually pure solid carbon residue is produced with the balance of all other matter typically converted into steam (from water), and various gaseous volatiles. In FIG. 1 all solids transferred through hopper 3 and into the barrel 57 of extruder driven by drive motor 4, are transferred in the direction shown by arrow 6 and heated by band heater method means to such a temperature that the solids are terrified or carbonized. The process divides all organic matter into carbon with a crumbly and friable texture and which is transferred within chamber 58 downward and along barrel 60 in the direction shown by arrow 17. All other steam and gaseous matter is transferred upward in the direction shown by arrow 19 and into space 22 via conduit 21 wherein the gas and steam can be dissolved into glycerol or condensed and mixed with glycerol and any other suitable matter such as water within space 27. Refrigeration is provided to heat exchanger 25 with the refrigerant being transferred there from via conduit 24 in the direction shown by arrow 23. This process divides all matter transferred via hopper 3 into two streams. The first stream comprising substantially pure carbon and a second gaseous stream subsequently liquefied by condensing and/or blending with glycerol. In one preferred embodiment. Said first and second streams can be processed by recombining as disclosed herein within high speed blender space 33. However alternatively said first and second streams can be processed via two entirely separate streams by treatment within duplicated equipment disclosed herein in association with FIG. 8, FIG. 9, FIG. 8 (i), and FIG. 9 (i) whereby said first stream of pulverized carbon can be treated by blending with a measured quantity of water or super heated steam in which case a more complete reaction producing substantially only carbon monoxide, hydrogen and carbon dioxide in small quantities and said second stream, treated separately, via similar equipment wherein a greater quantity of carbon dioxide is likely to be produced and therefore retained within syn-gas thereby produced. Such syn-gas can then be, if so desired, treated by separation of hydrogen and carbon monoxide with use of membrane separation equipment such as maybe provided by many corporations dealing with membrane separation technologies including Alfa Laval Nakskov A.S., Denmark; Donaldson Membranes, Newton Le Willows, England; and, Euroby Limited, Worthing, Sussex, UK. The membrane separation process can provide a means of separating and isolating a selected gas which may be, for example, hydrogen gas. Hydrogen gas may then be combined with other syn-gas streams to provide a syn-gas comprising larger ratio of hydrogen such as approximately two thirds hydrogen with the remaining one third comprising carbon monoxide; or, alternatively by separating a stream of carbon monoxide for combination with a stream of syn-gas to yield a syn-gas stream of two thirds carbon monoxide and one third hydrogen.
Such isolated continuous streams of syn-gas, comprising a “trimmed” composition of selected CO:H2 proportions (e.g. 55% CO:H2 45%) are suitable for predominantly diesel fuel production by transferring the stream of syn-gas to a Fischer synthesis reactor maintained at a temperature range between 200 to 250 degrees C. containing a catalyst including cobalt, so as to yield a greater percentage of diesel oil.
Most preferably the source of energy to heat the equipment and drive the electric motors all shown. The reaction is catalyzed by metals such as nickel, tungsten, ruthenium and molybdenum in connection with FIG. 1 will be sourced from wind generators or hydro-electric sources. Alternatively, electric generators driven by wind, will be installed with each facility and arranged to provide power in such a way that at least the amount of electric power required in total will be produced by the wind powered generators. This may require the sale of surplus wind generated power to regional utilities.
The gas produced comprising hydrogen and carbon monoxide with some water vapor is transferred through the open end of conduit 100 at 102 in the direction shown by arrow 104 and arrows 106 and 108, along conduit 110 and directly to the inlet of gas pump 11. Gas comprising substantially an equal quantity each of hydrogen and carbon monoxide is therefore transferred in the direction shown by arrow 10 via conduit 112.
Referring now to FIG. 1( i) a cross section through an equipment designed to provide a method of continuous renewable fuel production from triglycerides derived from either animal or plant origin is shown. The equipment is comprised of an outer cylindrical member 904 enclosing a series of machined discs such as 932 and 931 fixed rigidly to a centrally disposed driveshaft 925 with centerline 933 and interposed discs such as 929 and 912 machined so as to provide a barrier between said first temperature-controlling stream and a second stream following a second pathway flowing in the direction shown by arrows 860, 702, 864 and 700 in the opposing direction to said first temperature-controlling stream. Said first temperature-controlling stream is further restricted by discs such as 800, 802, 804, 806, 808 and 810 wherein the outer rim of each disc is attached rigidly and sealingly to tubular sections held within outer cylinder 904 and in direct contact therewith at interface 905. Each cylindrical segment such as 1000 is attached to a disc member similar to 803 at the outer perimeter of the disc member and the inner surface of a cylindrical member such as 1000.
The annular point of contact such as 800 between each disc member such as 803 with each tubular member such as 1000 can be sealed by welding (as shown in FIG. 1( iii), items 7000 and 7001) in place and arranged such that an enclosed pathway such as 807 allowing said first temperature-controlling stream to flow as shown by arrow 890 and on the opposing side of disc 803 pathway 815 in the direction shown by arrow 805 with annular space 862 connecting both sides of disc 803 around the inner edge thereof. In this way a continuous stream of temperature-controlling fluid such as and most preferably glycerol can be injected into an annular port represented by arrow 1010 so as to flow in the direction shown by arrow 816 along a radial pathway extending outwardly and away from centerline 933 communicating directly with a perpendicular pathway 1002 which communicates directly with a radial pathway following an outer surface of disc member 810 in the direction shown by arrow 811 through annular space 814 connecting with pathway 1003 flowing in an outward radial direction represented by arrow 809 communicating directly with the next perpendicular pathway and so on. Members 1005 and 1004 are machined most preferably a suitable steel material such as inconel and located adjacent to rotating disc 1006 providing a space of between 100 microns and 200 microns at the interface 1007 between member 1005 and disc member 1006 and interface 1008 between member 1004 and disc 1006. An annular space 812 is therefore enclosed by members 1005 and 1004 and rotating disc member 1006 with contact between members 1005 and 1004 at contact point 1009. The contact point 1009 extends the full distance around a perimeter of each member 1004 and 1005 and when said members 1004 and 1005 are in full contact with each other around the perimeter at 1009 with all members such as 1004 and 1005 held together by clamping force represented by arrow 928 with opposing arrow 927 and of such magnitude so as to ensure that each pair of rotating discs enclosing members such as 1004 and 1005 are in contact with each other thereby providing a seal preventing any fluid that may be in space 812 or space 796 or space 832 cannot escape from spaces such as 812 outward between members 1004 and 1005 and into perpendicular channel such as 1002. “0” rings such as 822 and 888 are provided between each pair of members such as 1004 and 1005 to seal the annular contact point between each adjacent pair of members such as 1004 and 1005. Clamping force 927 and 928 as can be seen are opposing and provided so as to ensure all members discs stacked between each end are held together with a space of approximately 100 microns to 200 microns between each rotating disc such as 1006 and the adjacent pair of enclosing members such as 1004 and 1005. In this way said second pathway through which fluids can be transferred in the direction such as arrow 702 into annular space 832 and therefrom as shown by arrow 700 between rotating disc 932 and adjacent enclosing member 1012 and into perpendicular space 1013 in the direction shown by arrow 1014 then along space between member 1015 and rotating disc 931 in the direction shown by arrow 1016 and so on. In this way triglycerides represented by arrow 936, supercritical carbon dioxide shown by arrow 938, and ethanol represented by arrow 930 can be injected in a continuous stream into annular space 922 in which is provided a series of spaces created by a series of vertically disposed metallic separators spaced at approximately 1 mm distance between a first and a second space-defining metallic separator. Said radially disposed space-separating metallic members are fixed to member 925 such that when member 925 is rotated a measured quantity of each of fluids represented by arrows 936, 938 and 940 is injected into each space. Said fluids comprising triglycerides, carbon dioxide and ethanol are injected under high pressure such as between 2,000 psi and 3,000 psi but most preferably 2,500 psi and proportioned relative to each other according to measured proportions provided in a continuous flow wherein each fluid is pumped separately by a suitable pump such as positive displacement diaphragm pumps such as is manufactured by Bran & Luebbe. Said radially disposed annular spaces 930 provide an intensive mixing mechanism as shown in FIG. 1( ii). Said intensive mixing mechanism comprises spaces as shown in FIG. 1 (ii) having direct close contacting disposition relative to each port through which the triglyceride, ethanol and supercritical carbon dioxide fluids are transferred wherein said ports are static and annular space 930 rotating at approximately 28,000 rpm or less or more. The intensive blending action provided to the triglycerides, ethanol and carbon dioxide at 922 occurs immediately prior to transfer of the blended fluids through space 924 and into interface 798 in the direction shown by arrow 760. The enclosing members such as 1015 may be held fixed relative to outer cylinder 904 while central driveshaft 925 with attached rotating disc such as 1006 and 931 or 932 rotate at approximately 28,000 rpm. Alternatively members such as 1015 may be rotated in the opposite direction to discs 932 and 931 etc however most importantly the differential between the rotating speed of members 932 and 931 and enclosing such as 1015 and 1012 is approximately 28,000 rpm. In this way a high shear is subjected to the fluid transferred in the direction shown by arrows 702 and 860. In normal operation an electric drive motor is attached to shaft 925 in such a way that vibration will not affect the operation thereof.
Referring now to FIG. 1( iii) and Area “A” of FIG. 1( i) fr5 as shown in FIG. 1 (iii) is defined by three straight broken lines in FIG. 1 (i) but in an enlarged view. In this way the flow of fluids through the equipment as shown in FIG. 1 (i) can more clearly be understood. Centerline 933 of shaft 925 as shown in FIG. 1 (i) is numbered likewise in FIG. 1 (iii) and barrier discs 806 and 804 are also commonly indicated in both FIG. 1 (i) and FIG. 1 (iii). The temperature-controlling fluid referenced in FIG. 1 (i) flows in the direction shown by arrow 200 through conduit 201. Outer cylinder 904 is shown by the same number in FIG. 1 (i) and FIG. 1 (iii) and solid line 905 shown in FIG. 1 (i) and FIG. 1 (iii) represents the interface where the inner surface of 904 and the outer surface of bushings 905. Bushing 235 and bushing 221 are shown in position and adjacent to one another with the contact face represented by solid line 227 in FIG. 1 (iii). For each barrier disc such as 806 and 804 as shown in FIG. 1 (iii) and all other barrier discs shown in FIG. 1 (i) such as 810, 808, and 800 the separation between each bushing as shown by line 227 in FIG. 1 (iii) is parallel and on the same plain as the centerline of each disc such as 247 in FIG. 1 (iii) however after assembly of the equipment the bushing are held tightly together by compression from the end of each bushing shown for example in FIG. 1 (i) by the solid lines 814 and 809 however pressure applied at each end of the equipment applied to hold each end of the members such as 248 and 211 as shown in FIG. 1 (iii) is independently maintained and is adjustable by the variation of the hydraulic pressure through conduits 900 and 901 as shown in FIG. 1 (i). Said hydraulic pressure applied so as to retain said members 248 and 211 together and in substantially parallel condition can be varied and adjusted so as to flow through said conduits 901 and 900 in the direction shown by double-headed arrow 999 and 989 as shown in FIG. 1 (i). Said hydraulic pressure may be applied and controlled via a suitable pressure regulator such as manufactured and distributed by Parker Hydraulics and at a pressure of approximately 2,000 psi to 6,000 psi. During operation of the equipment shown in FIG. 1 (i) said temperature-regulating fluid shown by arrow 200 in FIG. 1 (iii) and arrow 202 showing the direction of flow between barrier disc 806 and member 209 may be any suitable fluid manufactured for the purpose of heat transfer and temperature regulation however most preferably the fluid will be glycerol. Said fluid flows in the direction shown by arrows 202, 207, 213 is arranged to pass through annular opening 214 and then in the direction shown by arrow 213 which opposes the direction of arrow 207 therefore as can be readily understood said temperature-controlling glycerol fluid is in intimate contact with members such as 209, 211 and 248 as shown in FIG. 1 (iii) and able to absorb heat hat may be generated by an exothermic reaction within for example space 238 or in channels 210 and 252. Alternatively in the event of an endothermic reaction occurring heat may be transferred from an external source to said members such as 248 and 211 and thereby when said fluid glycerol is transferred in said controlled manner the temperature of said members 248 and 241 for example can be controlled within a narrow range of variation. Fluid reactants which may either gaseous or liquid when subjected to normal atmospheric conditions can be compressed if said fluid is a gas to provide a dense vapor such as supercritical carbon dioxide or alternatively triglycerides which are normally in liquid phase under atmospheric conditions can be pumped together with for example ethanol or methanol in the direction shown by arrows 260 in annular channel 262 and subsequently through microchannel 252 into space 238 or 215 and after passing in the direction shown by arrow 240 through microchannel 210 and then along channel 216 as shown in FIG. 1 (iii). When subjected to the appropriate pressure and temperature such as about 3,000 psi or less or more and 270 C. or less or more the reactants comprising triglycerides and ethanol will react to produce bio-diesel otherwise known as fatty esters and glycerol. This reaction is clearly detailed in patent disclosures by the present inventor and in patent disclosures filed at the USPTO by the present inventor or his agents including the USPTO. Such a reaction is inhibited by the presence of the glycerol that it produces and a purpose of the equipment disclosed herein is to provide a means of separating said glycerol from the reacting stream such as when occurring in microchannel 252 by means of a centrifugal separating force through aperture at 224. Members 211 and 348 are arranged such that aperture with centerline represented by solid line 224 is normally closed and held in a tight closed and sealed position by application of clamping force created when sufficiently pressurized hydraulic fluid is transferred into both opposing ends of the equipment via conduit 900 and 989. Said aperture can be opened by reducing hydraulic pressure applied at each end of the equipment through conduits 900 and 901 and also increasing the pressure of fluids in space 238 which is achieved by elevating the pressure of fluids transferred via the three streams 936, 938 and 940. Opening said aperture to allow the extraction of glycerol enables glycerol having accumulated in space 238 as a result of centrifugal force caused by the rotation of shaft 925 about the axis 933 with sufficient speed to cause the accumulation in space 238 to pass in the direction shown by arrow 245 through the aperture at 224 and into the channel 201 and upon closing said aperture at 224 any flow of fluid therethrough is stopped. In this way after the accumulation of glycerol in space 238 the quantity of glycerol that remains accumulated in space 238 can be controlled by opening and then closing said aperture at 224. Said aperture at 224 comprises an annular opening between the members such as 248 and 211 about a centerline represented by 224 and said aperture can be opened and closed as required by adjusting the pressure of hydraulic fluid transferred via conduits 900 and 901 and/or adjusting the pressure within space 238. Two parallel lines 245 and 206 are spaced apart to enclose a space 205 located between space 238 and space 215. Space 238 comprises an annular ring enclosed within borders represented by the line 204, 203 and 237 whereas annular ring comprising space 215 has an outer perimeter represented by line 206. Space 205 is located between the outer perimeter 206 of said inner space 215 and the inner perimeter 204 of outer space 238. Glycerol can be accumulated progressively and until it fills the entire space comprising 205 and 238 and after the release of a quantity of glycerol having a volume equal to the volume of the annular ring comprising the space defined by outer perimeter line 204 and inner perimeter line 206 thereby reducing the quantity of accumulated glycerol to that contained within the space 238 having an inner perimeter line represented by line 204. The reaction between said reactants transferred through space 262 in the direction shown by arrow 260 continues progressively and the equipment is arranged to enable the separation of glycerol from the reactants transferred via microchannel 252 when occupying space 215. This is achieved because glycerol has a specific gravity significantly greater than the reactants. Therefore after separation of glycerol cause by said centrifugal force whereby glycerol is transferred in the direction shown by arrow 245 the remaining reactants are transferred in the direction shown by arrow 240 and into microchannel 210 and then in the direction shown by arrow 241. The reaction between the reactants specified as triglycerides, ethanol and supercritical carbon dioxide is endothermic and it is therefore necessary to provide sufficient heat to maintain the reaction. However the equipment disclosed herein in association with FIG. 1 (i) and FIG. 1 (iii) can be modified by way of replacing spinning members for example 247 with catalysts such as cobalt oxide having been crushed and compacted into the space between the perimeters represented by lines 210 and 252. The equipment when modified in this way can be used in a Fischer-Tropsch synthesis production of synthetic diesel by compressing the syn-gas trimming the ratio of hydrogen molecules to a desired ratio relative to carbon monoxide (CO) and transferring the compressed syn-gas vapor through the annular space 262 as shown in FIG. 1 (iii) and into space represented by 247 between the granules of cobalt oxide and any liquid synthetic diesel produced as a result of the reaction. The molecules of syn-gas will transfer in the direction shown by arrow 245 and through annular space at 226 and into a stream of identical fluid in space 201. Temperature of the equipment will be controlled by the transfer of large quantities of diesel in the direction shown for example by the arrow 200, 202, 207 and 213. The Fischer-Tropsch reaction can be adjusted by changing temperature, prevailing pressure and the catalyst used. However, in all cases the Fischer-Tropsch reaction is exothermic and will require the removal of excess heat and the equipment disclosed by FIG. 1 (i) and FIG. 1 (iii) is suitable for this application and when the shaft 925 is rotated about the axis 933. At a selected speed fluids can be transferred from space 247 and into the channel 201 with excess fluid being removed while retaining sufficient synthetic diesel to provide an adequate temperature-controlling medium by use of an external heat exchanger and refrigeration of adequate capacity reducing the temperature of the recycled fluid.
Referring now to FIG. 2 a cross section of a segment of a dynamic micro channel equipment is shown. The cross section shown in FIG. 2 in diagrammatic format comprises an outer vessel illustrated by vertical solid lines on the left hand side 18 and the right hand side 31, which are representative of the two sides of a circular cross section pressure vessel mounted securely within said outer pressure vessel a second pressure vessel represented by vertical lines 2 and 14 which are parallel with the outer walls of outer pressure vessel is also of circular cross sectional profile. Therefore if one was to look at the plan view of a vertically disposed pair of pressure vessels represented by the lines 18 and 31 with 2 and 14 located inward of the outer vessel, an outer circular vessel wall represented by 18 and 31 would be visible with an inner vessel securely fixed and having a gap 17 and 31 of equal distance from the walls of pressure vessel represented by vertical lines 2 and 14. At the center of the pressure vessels, a motor driven shaft 68 would be seen as the inner most member of the equipment. Each end of the pressure vessels are enclosed most preferably by a hemispherical member of suitable size such that the largest diameter peripheral edge of the circular edge mates with a corresponding pressure vessel with a heavy wall conduit 78 passing through both vessel hemispherical end caps and attached thereto rigidly at each end of the complete vessel. Therefore the two vessels comprising the outer vessel represented in FIG. 2 by lines 18 and 31 and the second innermost pressure vessel represented by the lines 14 and 2 are held relative to each other rigidly and in a fixed position with a heavy walled conduit comprising a solid bar having been bored out to allow a shaft shown as 68 with suitable bushings, seals, and bearings mounted centrally of the two pressure vessels. At one end of the assembly described thus far in association with FIG. 2, a seal most preferably comprising a pair of bearing members 56 and 54 having a space there between in which is contained a suitable fluid which comprises a component of the bearing assembly. At the end of shaft 68 which passes directly through the sealed bearing of members 56 and 54 is connected to a driving mechanism such as the hydraulic motor or an electric motor which may include a reducer or any suitable gear mechanism which provides a means of turning central shaft 68 at a speed variable as required. Three conduits represented by 7, 8, and 6 are provided at the center of an end and comprising heavy walled high pressure pipe each communicate with annular space 80 and connect said annular space 80 with three high pressure pumps or more or less but in any event in one instance, said three conduits 7, 6, and 8 are connected directly with a single conduit, for example conduit 112 of FIG. 1. The inner vessel represented by perimeter wall 2 and 14 is held centrally and enclosed by space 17 and 31 which is filled with the pressurized fluid such as carbon dioxide vapor, super heated steam, or super heated water, or chilled water as may be required, glycerol and mineral oil or suitable oils of any kind, and in any event the temperature of vessel 2, 14 is maintained as desired such as 200 degrees C. or more or less, but most preferably at a temperature which will enhance the production of liquids such as ethanol, gasoline, or diesel (C10H22), to (C15H32) ethylene (C2H4), paraffin (C24H52), olefin (C10H22), polypropylene (C3H6)n. The entire space within the outer vessel represented by 18 and 31 is pressurized at substantially the same pressure however the pressure in spaces represented by 17 and 31 will be less than the pressure in annular space 80. The inner pressure vessel represented by the lines 2 and 14 is attached to an internal assembly by way of fixed discs such as 3, 5, or 23, of circular profiled substantially the same circle diameter as the inner diameter of the vessel represented by 2 and 14. However for each disc a concentric round hole is provided to allow firstly the inner channel through which fluids represented by arrows 42 and 27 can be transferred wherein members 24, 34, 48, 50, and 26 which are also circular discs, however having an inner aperture with a smaller diameter than the diameter of aperture at the center of discs 3, 5, and 23 etcetera. Sections of tube 84, 86, and 88, cut to the same length and of an outer diameter the same as the inner diameter of the concentric holes in discs such as 24, 34, 48, 50, 92, and 26 which are cut such that tube sections 84, 86, and 88, for example can be attached thereto by welding but in any event connected to said discs in a sealing manner such that no fluids can leak there through. At the outer perimeter of discs 24, 34, 48, 50, 92, and 26, sections of tube such as 82, 90, and 89, are attached and sealed thereto in such a manner that a channel 62, 94, 96, 98, and 25, is created. In this way a fluid which is most preferably the same as fluid in space 17 can be transferred in the direction shown by arrows 46, 60, 27, 40, 96, 1, and 44, and also arrows 12, can be transferred in the direction shown. Said fluid transferred via outer channels is temperature controlled such that if a reaction taking place in an adjacent channel is endothermic then sufficient heat can be provided via the fluid medium transferred through said outer channels. However if the reaction occurring in an adjacent channel is exothermic then the fluid in said outer channels can be arranged to carry the heat away and in both cases, whether endothermic or exothermic, the fluid transferred through said outer channels and also contained in pressurized space 17 and 31 is recycled via transfer into and out of a suitable heat exchanger attached to both heating and cooling equipment, all having sufficient capacity so as to maintain the temperature within the inner channels as desired. The inner channel of space 30, 73, and 72, provides space through which a continuous stream of fluid originating from annular space 80 can be transferred in the direction shown by arrows 28, 38, and 32. Innermost discs 33, 52, and 4, are fixed rigidly to inner shaft 68, with bushings there between, represented by member 70 which comprises a series of bushings of similar length located around inner shaft 68. Inner members such as 4, 52, and 33, can be manufactured from any suitable material which may be organic, plastics materials of any suitable type, metals such as Iron with the surfaces “nitrided”—a common term in the machine tool industry—and which comprises surface treatment to provide a thin layer of Iron nitride (Fe2N); a special ceramic material comprising nickel and aluminum treated in such a way that the two metals amalgamate to create a ceramic nickel aluminite (NiAl) or any other suitable material but most preferably will be inert or substantially inert. The equipment as shown in FIG. 2 can be integrated into a process capable of producing liquid fuels such as diesel and paraffin synthesized from a dense fluid comprising carbon monoxide and hydrogen, known as “syn-gas”, in suitable proportions wherein said dense fluid originates from equipment as described in FIG. 1. A suitable, gas tight connection between the equipment shown in FIG. 1 and FIG. 2 can be arranged such that the syn-gas flows into the annular space 80 of FIG. 2 and maintained at a suitable pressure such as 10 bar or more or less, and having a suitable rate of mass flow. Syn-gas transferred into annular space 80 then flows in the direction shown by, for example, arrows 28, and 32, which is transferred via reticulating channels radiating outward from the annular space 80 and then returning toward the centrally located bushing shown as 70 and outwardly again in channels that radiate outward machined into and across the surface of members such as 33 wherein said micro-channels radiate outwardly along paths that intersect at the plan view center point of members such as 33.*** shaft in direct contact with the surfaces of 24, 82, 48, 50, 92, and 26, and in such a manner that will maintain a substantially constant temperature such as between as low as minus 80 degrees C. and up to 450 degrees C. Catalysts, such as Iron Nitride (Fe2N), Magnesium (MgO), Silicon Oxide (SiO2), sintered Iron (Fe), Iron Carbide (Fe2C) and Cobalt (Co) which have been crushed and broken into pieces between 1 mm and 3 mm overall size can be packed into spaces represented by channel 30, 73, 72, 10, and 15, and such that fluid transferred through the channels from an inner space 80 and in the direction shown by for example arrows 28, 38, 1, and 40, will be in direct contact and exposed in such a manner that the specified and desired reaction between the two gases hydrogen and carbon monoxide to produce various other fluids such as ethylene, ethanol, diesel, paraffin, and polyolefins from which for example polyethylene and polypropylene can be manufactured. Ethanol having the formula C2H6O clearly requires oxygen to be present and this can be achieved by providing super heated steam, carbon dioxide, or oxygen gas into annular space 80 in proportions approximately equal to that required to produce ethanol from a reaction between the gases of hydrogen and carbon monoxide with said oxygen. In normal operation the equipment shown in association with FIG. 2 will produce a range of fluids which can be adjusted according to the prevailing temperature, pressure, and most importantly the type of catalyst provided in channels such as the channel 72 and 73. It can be seen that the fluid in channels 72 and 73 as indicated by arrows 32, 38, and 28, is moving as arranged in the opposite direction of the fluid medium transferred through space 15, 10, or for example 62, traveling in the direction for example shown by arrows 12, 1, and 40, so as to provide for a more consistent temperature throughout the equipment. It should be noted that members 33, 52, and 4, fixed to driving shaft 68, can be driven by rotating shaft 68 and in doing so provide a continuous mixing action for fluids transferred into annular space 80 and along the channels such as 10 in the direction shown by arrows 32, and 28. Additionally channels can be machined into discs 33, and 52, for example and furthermore the proximity of discs 33, and 52, for example can be in close and touching proximity to the parallel walls shown as for example 24 and 34. The channels can be machined so as to connect the annular space in contact with bushing 70 radiating outward and to the perimeter of for example discs 33, and 52. Furthermore micro channels can be machined into the contacting face of adjacent walls 24 for example and 34 providing an intensive mixing condition to any fluids that are transferred through the channels originating from annular space 80. In this way for example the equipment described in association with FIG. 2 can also be used for the production of bio-diesel wherein the fluids comprising triglycerides, ethanol, and super critical carbon dioxide, can be transferred respectively through the inlet conduits 7, 8, and 6, and into annular space 80 at a pressure such as 2000 psi or more or less and there from via channel shown by space 10, 13, 15, so as to provide for thorough blending of the three fluids as they are transferred through the equipment. It is anticipated that the reaction time for bio-diesel will be little more than one minute, perhaps less, and unlikely though it is, somewhat more than a minute but certainly not more than five minutes.
Referring now to FIG. 2 (i) a cross section through equipment similar to that described in association with FIG. 2, however the equipment shown is complete and provided with hydraulic pistons 900 and 920. Three streams of 1) triglycerides, 2) SC—CO2 and 3) ethanol, are provided via three high pressure conduits within heavy walled tube 921 and into annular space 922 which is confined and subject to violent blending action by impellor 923. Annular space 922 communicates directly with conduit 924 which connects directly with annular pathway 926 which feeds the first rotating disc space. Piston 920 and piston 900 are arranged to provide hydraulically driven compressive force diametrically opposed to each other to provide a clamping force P3. Piston 900 is pressurized in the direction shown by arrow 927 while piston 920 is retained with a compressive clamping force in the direction of arrow 928 and such that the combined clamping force of piston 920 and piston 900 results in a pressure of at least up to 3000 psi in the space between the two pistons. A series of drilled segmented conduits such as 902 are provided on a pitched circle diameter within the external edge of members such as 914 and 929 and allow the flow of glycerol within space 902 at a pressure similar to the pressure throughout the space between pistons 920 and 900 which are retained within a common cylinder 904 which comprises a heavy walled steel tube with a honed surface finish throughout and across the inner wall 930. Impellor members such as 931 and 932 are rigidly attached to drive shaft 925 which is located at the center of cylinder 904 having centerline 933 common to both cylinder 904 and drive shaft 925. Annular space 922 encloses a section of drive shaft 925 connecting with conduit 924 which encloses a section of drive shaft 925 also. A total of five impellers are provided clamped between members such as 929 and 914 and arranged such that the blended proportioned fluid comprising a proportion from each of streams 936, 938, and 940, which represent triglyceride stream, super critical CO2 stream, and ethanol stream respectively wherein the streams 936, 932, and 940, are transferred into annular space 922 in adjustable and selected proportions and at a pressure sufficient to provide for the continuous transfer of the combined fluids into annular space 922 and there from to flow along disc space 926 between the first disc 942 which lubricates the space through which it is pumped in a radial and outward direction away from centerline 933. The rotating discs such as 931 are driven by an electric drive 950 via a suitable gearbox thereby providing a continuous and adjustable rotating shaft 925 which is connected directly to the output of said gearbox. Each disc 931 is driven via a suitable keyed connection thereto and the rotating speed can be as much as 3000 rpm or more or less. The fluid comprising the processing liquid transferred into space 922 flows radially outward and through a space such as 952 and then between a second outer member such as member 929 and in such a manner that the fluid prevents contact of the rotating discs and the enclosing members such as 914 and 929. It can be seen therefore that fluid transferred into the equipment described in connection with FIG. 2 (i) is firstly of selected proportions and the fluid is subjected to the pressurized fluid which flows around its upper and lower faces, thereby preventing contact with the members on each side of said disc or rotor such as 961. A series of blades are fixed around the perimeter of each disc and arranged to apply outward radial pressure to fluid which is in contact there with. Such outward radial pressure or centrifugal force results in the heaviest particles that may be present with said fluid, in such a manner that the heavier matter will occupy the furthermost available space within which it has direct communication. Therefore any glycerol formed as a result of the reaction between the three components of fluid transferred into space 922 will be driven into space such as 956 and progressively spaces such as 956, which are provided around each disc or rotor, will become filled with glycerol and the action of each rotor will cause any fluids of lower density than the glycerol to occupy available space inward of the accumulated glycerol, and the deeper said glycerol becomes in the space around each rotor such as 956, the more pure it will become at the region furthest away from the peripheral impellor type blades such as 958. Each pair of members enclosing respective rotors have an annular rim such as 912 which contacts the face of the opposing member such as 914 which is in direct contact with annular ridge 912 which is arranged to provide a seal when pressurized suitably. The pressure between a pair of members such as 914 and 929 can be adjusted by adjusting the glycerol pressure P2 relative to the pressure of fluid transferred via annular space 922. More specifically when glycerol pressure is lowered relative to the pressure at, for example 956, the members such as 929 and 914 can be caused to open and the pressure difference between the two fluids will only equalize after fluid has transferred from the inner spaces such as 956 and into space such as 902. This is in fact the manner in which glycerol, having accumulated in spaces such as 956, can be removed from the stream of 952.
Referring now to FIG. 3 an equipment designed for the purpose of gasifying carbon with super heated steam to produce carbon monoxide and hydrogen gas comprises a tube manufactured from inconel steel with an outer wall 2002 and inner space 2000. The process of syn-gas production in this way is also described as steam reforming. The inconel steel tube is enclosed within an outer shell 2004 and an 2014 can be filed with any suitable metal including inconel and alternatively could be for example zinc having a melting point below 400° C. The equipment is heated by either electrical induction or electric heating elements provided with space 2014 and at suitable locations therein to ensure a consistent and stable temperature throughout the length of said Inconel tube 2002 within the outer shell 2004. A port 2016 represents the injection port through which super heated steam and carbon powder is transferred and a such a velocity and mass flow that the residence time within space 2000 of tube 2002 is not more than one second. FIG. 3 shows entry port 2016 as an open end of inconel tube 2002 however a preferred embodiment may comprise an extended tube section connected to port 2016 and wherein said tube extension is enclosed within a suitable heating means such as electric band heaters attached to the full outer circumference of the inlet tube having sufficient heating capacity to generate super heated steam from water contained in the suspension injected therein by way of a suitable high pressure pump continuously and at rate of injection sufficient to ensure that the residence time for any particular particulate suspended in the water injected therein. In this way water containing granulated or powered carbon wherein the particulate size of said carbon does not exceed 30 microns and most preferably 10 microns. When assembled as described in association with FIG. 3 and the capacity to gasify carbon by reforming with super heated steam is substantial. A suitable high pressure pump such as can be supplied by Bran & Luebbe comprising most preferably a positive displacement diaphragm pump is provided an unlimited supply of powdered carbon blending in suspension with water provides the source materials and the pumping means to enable transfer of sufficient carbon and water into space 2000 or inconel conduit 2002. When provided in this manner the subsequently vaporized water expands with explosive force driving the suspended carbon particles through conduit 2002 and around each spiraling segment of said tube 2002 and in manner that ensures contact with the walls of tube 2002 by way of centrifugal force. The specific density of super heated steam is substantially less than the specific density of solid carbon particles however given the adequate flow of super heated steam through conduit 2002 in the direction shown by arrow 2006 and arrows 2016 and 2018 ultimately arrow 2020 and 2022. The carbon particles are carried at high velocity through conduit 2002 ensuring a contact with the inner surface of conduit 2002 thereby ensuring that gases transferred through conduit 2002 occurs more rapidly than does the solid carbon particles. In this way continuous contact within the spiraling section of conduit 2002 in conjunction with the high velocity with gases therein ensures the disturbance of carbon monoxide and hydrogen production by the reaction of said super heated steam with said carbon particles. This method enables contact of the carbon particles intimately with super heated steam thereby ensuring that the reaction is maintained.
Referring again to FIG. 3, conduit 2002 is directly attached to a conduit extension terminating at an injector 2048 and mass flow regulator 2046. A fluid suspension comprising water, glycerol which can be included optionally, and carbon “flour” is pumped under high pressure in the direction shown by arrow 2042 through conduit 2040 to mass flow regulator 2046 with computer controlled flow regulation having low voltage control connecting mass flow regulator 2046 with PLC connection which provides the means to regulate the fluid input according to requirement via conduit 2050 via injector 2048. The entire length of conduit 2050 and 2002, and vessel 2004 with the enclosed spiral conduit is heated by way of electric induction or alternatively any suitable heating method including the injection a quantity of oxygen directly into the flow wherein the quantity of oxygen is controlled with precise accuracy but enabling combustion of sufficient carbon with the conduit to generate heat to elevate he temperature to approximately 850 C. or higher or lower. In this way water contained within the fluid injected in conduit 2050 is rapidly converted to super-heated steam with the enclosed straight-section conduit at 2050 and 2002 in addition to the spiral 2003 and straight section 2051. The rapid expansion of volume in 2050 and 200 causes massive velocity increase in the direction shown by arrow 2006. The straight input section of 2050 and 2002 enables an unrestricted increase in velocity of the super heated steam carrying with it the carbon “flour”. Carbon “flour” comprising carbon particles having particles of 30 microns maximum diameter but typically substantially smaller are carried with the super heated steam and driven into the inner face of the outer wall of each spiral such as at 2030. In this way the carbon particles roll over the inner surface of the spiraling conduit and therefore travel at a substantially lower velocity than the driving super heated steam which is present in overwhelming quantities. The reaction between water and carbon to produce the gases hydrogen and carbon monoxide is enhanced by disturbing the outward flow of the gases from each carbon particle thereby improving exposure of each carbon particle to the super heated steam and more importantly oxygen and hydrogen atoms which drives the reaction. The resulting syn-gas blend (CO, H2 plus excess water vapor) expands and therefore accelerates in velocity, as it travels through the spiraling section 2003 and subsequent straight section 2051 in the direction shown by arrow 2022, until all free carbon, carried with the gases, ash and super heated steam/water vapor, is consumed. The ratio of firstly, the entire conduit length to the quantity of carbon micro-particles suspended in the stream of water injected therein is arranged so as to maximize the efficiency of syn-gas production; more particularly, the measured and controlled quantity of carbon particles suspended in water and injected into the input end of the inlet pipe is sufficient to facilitate the continued reaction of the superheated steam with carbon “flour” or micro-particles until the remaining carbon is consumed as it is carried through the straight section 2051 and until just prior to the combination of syn-gas, ash solids and excess steam is dropped into the cyclone shown as item 48 in FIG. 1. The temperature is maintained at a high level such as in the order of 850° C. and the pressure can exceed 5,000 psi but a minimum of 3,000 psi is preferably maintained. A tapering restriction at 2024 terminates in a profiled restriction at 2039 wherein as shown in FIG. 3 (i) with radially arranged narrow slot like apertures 2032, 2034 and 2036 radiating outward from a small centrally located round aperture 2038, provides the conditions to convert any remaining carbon particles to syn-gas. Most preferably, the slot profiled openings such as 2036 will be no wider than 200 microns. The conduit expansion at section 2026 allows the syn-gas generated within the conduit to expand into a wider section of the conduit at 2012 and the continuous flow of syn-gas continues in the direction shown by arrows 2010 and 2008. Port 2028 connects directly with an ash separating cyclone, shown in FIG. 1 as item 48.
The equipment shown in FIG. 3 may be integrated into a system similar to the arrangement as shown in FIG. 1 by inserting it such that conduit 92 of FIG. 1 is connected directly to port 2016 of FIG. 3 and port 2028 is coupled directly to port 102 of conduit 100 also of the FIG. 1.
Referring again to in a preferred embodiment, exhaust gas containing carbon dioxide can be collected by way of conduit 450 wherein a relatively high volume but low pressure compressor at 452 compresses the collected gases to provide a stream of exhaust gases that travel in the direction shown by arrow 454 prior to compression and after compression at a relatively low pressure (for example, in the order of 50 psi to 80 psi) the compressed exhaust gases are discharged into conduit 456 so as to flow in the direction shown by arrow 458 and after transfer through multiple filters 460 are released through a diffusing member 462 located at the base of pressure vessel 464, most preferably comprising a cylindrical stainless steel enclosure with domed ends, having a diameter approximately ⅙th of it's length and enclosing space 466 within the pressure vessel 464. Pressure vessel 466 is filled up to about 60% of its volume with fluid polyamine to a level indicated by line 468. Pressure relief valve 470 is arranged to be in direct communication between space 476 and the external atmosphere and is located at the uppermost region of vessel 466 and above region 476 of space 466. Conduit 472 is located at an upper region of vessel 464 and in direct communication between region 476 of space 466 and atmosphere such that excess gas that may otherwise accumulate in region 476 can discharge directly to atmosphere via conduit 472 and in the direction shown arrow 474. Vessel 466 is rigidly mounted to a suitable carbon steel frame (not shown) with identical pressure vessel 478 located adjacent to and parallel and at the same level with vessel 478 which is also mounted within a carbon steel frame such that liquid polyamines can be transferred between the two pressure vessels 464 and 478. A purpose for using polyamines in this way is to enable the selective absorption of carbon dioxide gas from a continuous stream of exhaust gases wherein the said exhaust gases comprise nitrogen and carbon dioxide substantially with trace gases including oxygen, carbon monoxide and atmospheric inert gases. Polyamine liquid selectively absorbs carbon dioxide gas at a lower temperature of for example 45 F and can be expelled or removed there from by elevating the temperature of the polyamine fluid. Therefore when fluid polyamine is transferred into vessel 478 and heated by way of for example gas furnace 482 carbon dioxide gas having been absorbed into the polyamine fluid is released there from in gaseous phase and will accumulate within space 480 within vessel 478. Pump 484 can be conveniently located at an upper level relative to and adjacent to vessels 478 and 464 and arranged with conduit communicating directly with an upper region of vessel 466 and having discharge conduit 492 communicating directly with a lower region of vessel 478 with an opposing pump 486 arranged to extract polyamine fluid from an upper region of vessel 478 and arranged to extract polyamine fluid from vessel 478 and discharge into a lower region of vessel 464. As can seen the two pressure vessels 478 and 464 containing polyamines filled to levels indicated by lines 468 and 481 with interconnecting conduits 496 and 471 and pumps 484 and 486 respectively can be arranged to conveniently extract carbon dioxide gas from a continuous stream of exhaust gases transferred via conduit 450 being drawn thereto by compressor 452 to selectively remove carbon dioxide gas from said exhaust stream and transfer into an isolated enclosed space 480 and therefrom as shown by arrow 482 and 492 along conduit 494 directly to compressor 408.
Referring again to and in particular to gas diffuser 444 most preferably a diffuser having a capacity to process gas transferred there-through producing micro-bubbles having a diameter of less than 1 mm. In this way the surface of carbon dioxide gas in contact liquid carbon dioxide is increased substantially compared to bubbles having larger diameter and thereby enabling the rapid condensing of gas to liquid phase carbon dioxide. The heat exchanger 440 can be arranged to reduce the temperature of liquid carbon dioxide in the conduit 438 in the direction of arrow 446. Refrigeration 400 is powered by electricity most preferably generated by hydroelectric-produced power. In this way the method of separating carbon dioxide from the exhaust stream of any CO2-producing generator. By selectively dissolving into polyamine fluid while allowing the remaining atmospheric gases such as nitrogen the carbon dioxide is retained and energy is not wasted in the compression of inert gases and having no effect on atmospheric conditions. The atmospheric gases are allowed to escape through conduit 472 in the direction shown by arrow 474 and the carbon dioxide-laden polyamine is transferred from vessel 464 and into vessel 478 by extraction from an upper region within space 466 by pump 484 which them transfers the polyamine medium to a lower level of vessel 478. By elevating the temperature of the polyamine in vessel 478 the carbon dioxide gas is release into space 480 and as the pressure builds within space 480 carbon dioxide gas is extracted in the direction shown by arrow 482 through conduit 494 and eventually to compressor 408. The gas pressure with space 480 can be allowed to elevate thereby reducing the differential pressure between the inlet pressure in the direction shown by arrow 412 such that a relatively small amount of energy is consumed in compressing the gas so as to overcome backpressure exerted by the liquid carbon dioxide in space 432 of vessel 424. However the temperature of liquid carbon dioxide with vessel 424 will increase progressively and must therefore be dealt with hence the installation of heat exchanger 440 connection with refrigeration 400. Excess liquid carbon dioxide them be extracted via conduit 426 in the direction shown by arrow 426 and transferred to a suitable transfer facility by most preferably directly into road or rail shipping tankers by road or rail. In this way large quantities of carbon dioxide gas can be collected and converted to dense liquid at minimum cost in terms of energy and equipment. It should be noted that the conversion of carbon dioxide gas at atmospheric pressure to liquid phase carbon dioxide at 0 F and 300 psi which is the universal storage standard of pressure and temperature at which typical shipping tankage can be used to maximum benefit. After the removal and processing of the exhaust carbon dioxide from the atmosphere it can sequestered by transfer to a suitable space such as below ground in a non-productive oil well having been drained of profitable crude oil. The transfer of liquid carbon dioxide to storage space below ground provides a safe storage arrangement that is likely to remain below ground for many thousands of years. Furthermore the transfer in the way to substantially depleted oil wells can result in corresponding quantities of oil there-from.
The equipment described in association with, and the method used to separate and collect carbon dioxide gas from any exhaust stream can also be used on a small scale such as gas turbine generation of electricity and also from automotive exhaust sources. Perhaps the most challenging problem that must be overcome is the removal of carbon dioxide from automotive exhaust and particularly the rapidly expanding fleets of small vehicles. In a preferred embodiment the principles disclosed in association with can be applied on a small scale in particular for use with sport utility vehicles and prime mover tractor/trailer trucks that continue to increase in number. The insertion of a hydraulic pump between the power takeoff drive and differential drive input located between the engine and the rear axle can be arranged such that when the brake is applied to any of these vehicles the hydraulic pump is engaged so as to pump at very high pressure for example 20,000 psi or more or less. Suitable hydraulic fluid pumped into a heavy spring-loaded accumulator thereby storing energy as a compressed reservoir which can then be applied to drive a relatively low pressure compressor wherein the exhaust stream or a major part thereof can be redirected into a suitably sized accumulator of exhaust gas generated by the vehicle's main engine. Following the capture of exhaust at elevated pressure a stream of the stored exhaust is transferred through a atomizing manifold and into a vessel substantially filled with polyamine. Nitrogen gas can then be immediately released to atmosphere while the undesirable nitrogen compounds can be also collected in a separate container. The CO2 gas is derived from the exhaust stream is then reduced to liquid phase carbon dioxide and stored in a high pressure vessel until the opportunity to remove it.
Referring now to an outline of equipment is shown in diagrammatic format. Three pressure vessels 424, 478 and 464 are shown with various conduits connecting therewith are provided to comprise an assembly with compressors and pumps arranged so as to selectively separate and transfer carbon dioxide gas represented by arrow 412 from a continuous stream of exhaust gases represented by arrow 454, after extraction therefrom in the direction shown by arrows 414, 420, and 442, with excess liquid carbon dioxide extracted in the direction shown by arrow 426 from conduit 428. Suitable valves are provided as required to maintain a pressure of approximately 300 psi to 350 psi in space 432. An expansion valve 430 is located at the upper end of pressure vessel 423 and a valve controlling inlet pressure at 444 is also provided. A heat exchanger 440 is connected via conduits 438 and 402 to pressure vessel 424 so as to allow the extraction of liquid CO2 from an upper level of pressure vessel 424 and in the direction shown by arrow 446 directly to heat exchanger 440 via suitable valves and pressure regulators such as 448 and then after a reduction in temperature, returning via conduit 402 in the direction shown by arrow 450. A refrigerated compressor 400 is located adjacent to heat exchanger 440 and arranged to have sufficient capacity to accommodate the heat load created by the equipment and the transfer of gases therein. Gases comprising substantially carbon dioxide are transferred along conduit 410 in the direction shown by arrow 412 to compressor 408. Compressor 408 may be a screw type compressor, a turbine compressor, or a combination of screw and turbine compressors, but having sufficient capacity to compress CO2 gases emitted by firstly, the ABP meat processing equipment as described in patent applications disclosed in the name of the present inventor, or secondly CO2 generated (at a rate of approximately 500 tons per day) by ethanol production from fermenting corn or thirdly, the vast quantities of carbon dioxide gas produced in the numerous coal fired electricity generating plants located throughout the world including the USA, Australia, and China. The purpose of the equipment disclosed in association with is to provide a relatively low cost equipment with the capacity to reduce the carbon dioxide exhaust gases of such plant as coal fired electricity generating installations. The ABP beef separating plants will be used as pilot plants in the development of the massive equipment required for each coal burning facility. The carbon dioxide used by the ABP beef separation facilities in insignificant, and furthermore carbon dioxide produced at the ethanol production plants and therefore is not adding to the CO2 load of the earth's atmosphere. It is clear that a low cost equipment capable of removing CO2 from the atmosphere by preventing the escape of encapsulated exhaust streams discharged from the massive coal burning plants now proliferating China in a world that is already producing too much carbon dioxide. The equipment shown in association with is simple and does not require the installation of massive CO2 compressors that are horrendously expensive even for small quantity compression let alone the massive quantities produced by coal burning. Returning to gas exhausts produced by burning coal can be directed through a series of membrane filters that will separate nitrogen and carbon dioxide substantially. The stream of CO2 and nitrogen which comprises predominantly nitrogen, is separated such that the majority of nitrogen is returned to atmosphere with a very small percentage of carbon dioxide and the substantially carbon dioxide stream contains approximately 8% to 10% nitrogen with a balance (90% to 92%) of carbon dioxide. Nitrogen is separated prior to transfer through conduit 410 in the direction shown by arrow 412. The turbine compressor 408 increases the pressure to approximately 400 psi and transfers the stream through conduit 416 in the direction shown by arrow 414 through filters 404 and 406 installed in the stream of conduit 418 and the filtered fluid is then transferred in the direction shown by arrow 420 via conduits in the direction of 442 to inlet valve 444 which releases at a controlled rate a stream of fluid carbon dioxide into the liquid carbon dioxide which substantially fills space 432 of pressure vessel 424. Pressure vessel 424 may comprise a section of stainless steel tube of 6 inches diameter and of sufficient length that the gas transferred therein which comprises more than 90% carbon dioxide will enable the carbon dioxide component of the gas stream to condense into liquid while the small quantity of nitrogen that remains in bubbles will continue to travel in the direction shown by arrow 434 into the space 448 which is periodically exhausted via pressure regulator 430 to atmosphere. The liquid CO2 in space 432 is recycled via a heat exchanger 440 with an extraction port connected to conduit 438 at an upper location in pressure vessel 424 such that a controlled flow of liquid carbon dioxide can be transferred in the direction shown by arrow 446 through vein pump 448 into heat exchanger 440 which can be a tube in shell heat exchanger manufactured from carbon steel or stainless steel but wherein the shell is filled with a suitable refrigerant which may be ammonia or even carbon dioxide and a tube is provided to allow for the transfer of the liquid CO2 from pressure vessel 428 into the heat exchanger tubes and then there from through conduit 402 in the direction shown by arrow 450. The arrangement is provided such that the temperature of liquid CO2 in space 432 will be maintained at between minus 10 and up to 20 degrees F. and at that temperature which will most efficiently provide for the condensing of compressed gas transferred therein from the compressor 408. Liquid CO2 is returned to pressure vessel 424 via a port located at a lower section of the pressure vessel via conduit 402 in the direction shown by arrow 450. A refrigerated compressor 400 is connected to a second heat exchanger in parallel with heat exchanger 440 and is arranged to allow air cooling of the refrigerant medium after transfer there through prior to its use to chill the liquid CO2 of vessel 424 in the heat exchanger 440. Atmospheric air can used but most preferably a heat exchanger is connected with refrigerant compressor 400 so as to allow the refrigerant to be chilled by heat exchange with a medium such as glycerol which is reticulated through the other side of the heat exchanger, in fact any suitable liquid medium can be employed as a refrigerant on the heat producing side of the heat exchanger and glycerol or an equivalent blend of similar fluid that can “absorb” and carry heat away from the heat exchanger to another location where transfer of the excess heat can take place. In a preferred embodiment, the heat provided by the condensing CO2 vapor within vessel 424 can most preferably be applied to another useful process such as a drying aid wherein for example, solid fuel such as XXXXXX is produced and is blown via suitable fans in the direction shown by arrows 436 so as to flow across and in intimate contact with the heat exchanger provided to control temperature of the refrigerant medium used in refrigeration compressor 400.
Inconel® 600 or 625, INCOLOY® alloys 800H and 800HT® manufactured by Precision Cast-parts Corp (PCC), Portland, Oreg., are examples of suitable materials from which the above higher temperature application equipment can be built.
Referring to FIG. 6 (i) and FIG. 6 front elevations of equipment that can be utilized for the gasification of a continuous stream of super heated steam and carbon particles is shown. FIG. 6 (i) shows a front elevation of an “in situation” assembly of three pressure vessels 6116, 6077 and 6075 and FIG. 6 shows a front elevation of a single pressure vessel identical to each of the three pressure vessels in FIG. 6 (i) however the assembly shown in FIG. 6 shows detail of each end (upper and lower) with a central section absent for clarity. A cross section through each of the three pressure vessels of FIG. 6 (i) and the single pressure vessel of FIG. 6 would detail a circular cross section with heavy wall section however in FIG. 6 the central section of the sketch indicates a circular cross section by way of 3-D imaging of parts indicated and with the upper and lower aspects cross-sectioned to show the contents wherein the cross section passes through the centerline of the representative pressure vessel.
In a preferred aspect of equipment detailed in FIG. 6 and FIG. 6 (i) the assembly includes an input port 6042 through which water and pulverized carbon particles can be transferred after heating as shown by the arrow 6040. Multiple extraction conduits such as 6002 and 6056 can be arranged around the central input conduit 6044. The pressure vessel comprising a heavy wall tube 6030 manufactured from a suitable metallic material such as Inconel® 625 is enclosed at each end with suitably dished profile such as 6035 and 6049. The pressure vessel encloses space 6008 and 6028 such that only a single input conduit 6044 with port 6042 and a multiple extraction conduits 6002 and 6056. Said input conduit 6044 extends the full length of each pressure vessel held in position at the upper section by member 6050 which can be riveted or welded in position but in any event attached so as to provide a sealed input conduit with safety factor according to American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) requirements. A dimpled jacket 6066 with dimples such as 6068 is provided around the outer surface of the upper section of each pressure vessel so as to provide a heat exchanger 6010 with passages such as 6012 between the inner wall 6007 of pressure vessel 6001 and outer wall 6011 sealed to enclose spaces between the inner pressure vessel and the outer wall 6011 and situated in such a way any fluid transferred in the direction shown by arrow 6044 through inlet port 6062 and extraction port 6005 enabling the extraction of fluid in the direction shown by arrow 6006. Any fluid transferred via port 6062 into space 6012 and subsequently extracted therefrom via port 6005 will be subjected to intimate contact with the outer surface of pressure vessel 6007 and in this way heat can be removed from the upper section of pressure vessel 6007 and by controlling the mass flow of said fluid transferred therethrough the internal temperature of space 6008 can be affected. If said fluid transferred via space 6012 is maintained by means of an external heat exchanger at a temperature below that of space 6008 then the temperature within pressure vessel 6007 can be reduced however if said fluid transferred via space 6012 is maintained at a temperature above that of 6008 then the temperature within said chamber 6007 can be affected to the extent of elevating the temperature within said pressure vessel. In this way a selected temperature can be maintained within the upper section of said pressure vessel 6007. FIG. 6 (i) shows the assembly of pressure vessels 6116, 6077 and 6075. The pressure vessels are enclosed within insulating jackets 6090, 6073 and 6071 respectively each enclosing the upper portions of each pressure vessel above the enclosure 6015 and the segment of each pressure vessel enclosed within enclosing walls 6084 below the horizontal upper perimeter of enclosing walls 6015 with electric induction or otherwise heating arrangement 6086 arranged so as to heat the lower sections of each pressure vessel. In this way the entire pressure vessel can be maintained at a selected temperature such as any temperature such as between 600 C. and 1,100 C therefore. Water is first transferred via inlet port 6062 and outlet port 6005 prior to superheating and then in a continuous stream blended with a controlled continuous flow of carbon particles and mixed therewith prior to transfer via conduit 6044 as shown by arrows 6040 and 6052 along the full length and in a downward direction within each of the pressure vessels 6116, 6077 and 6075. Each pressure vessel is arranged similarly with members 6049 and 6037 providing passageways allowing transfer of superheated steam and carbon particles blended therewith in the direct shown by arrows 6085 and 6083 so as to emerge via a continuous annular slot at 6034 and 6082. A collection of hard chromed steel ball bearing such as 6078, 6079, 6081, 6033, 6076, 6016 and 6070 are provided within space such as 6028. A fluid metal such as a blend of molten aluminum, nickel, and/or silver is provided and maintained at a temperature above 600 C and most preferably at a temperature not more than 1,300 C. It must be noted that the material from which pressure vessel 6016 must be a suitable metal able to withstand temperature and pressure to which it is subjected without endangering the operation of the equipment described herein. Superheated steam and carbon particles transferred via conduit 6044 along the enclosed space thereof and in the direction shown by arrows 6052 and 6073 and then into space enclosing arrows 6083 and 6085 can be pressurized by a suitable high pressure pump such that the fluid blend emerges within the pressurized and enclosed space such as 6029 and therefore forced most preferably in micro-bubble condition through the annular space represented by 6082 and 6034 and with such an expanding energy caused by the exploding condition of superheated steam upward in the direction shown by 6023 and 6080 so as to drive ball bearings 6033 and 6081 upwardly shown by arrows 6023 and 6080 through the fluid molten metal and in the direction shown by 6020 and 6074 until the expanding energy released with the explosive force delivered by superheated steam is spent and thereby resulting in ball bearings returning to the lower section of pressure vessel in the direction shown by arrows 6070 and 6018. Ball bearings returning to the lower region of each pressure vessel will provide disturbance of the fluid within space 6028 which can be maintained at such a temperature that it vaporizes while within region 6028 and condenses within region 6008 and in the way providing a overwhelming heat concentrated within the confining space of the pressure vessel. In this way the conditions within the enclosed space of each pressure vessel will result in the rapid gasification of carbon reacting with steam provided therein.
In this way substantial volumes of superheated steam and carbon particles transferred via conduit 6044 can be converted by gasification into carbon monoxide and hydrogen gas rapidly. It is proposed that assemblies comprising multiple pressure vessels manufactured from suitable materials such as INCOLOY® and INCONEL® metals manufactured by PCC can be arranged most preferably within buildings no longer used in the aluminum smelting industry which are available in the Pacific Northwest of the United States of America with the abundant availability of hydroelectric power available from the hydroelectric power plants adjacent to the former aluminum smelting plants.
Referring to FIG. 6 (ii) a cross section through a Fischer Tropsch equipment is shown. This equipment is arranged so as to be scalable and in the example shown in FIG. 6 (ii) the cross section is suitable for relatively small quantity production. Hitherto a typical gasification and Fischer Tropsch renewable fuel production facility would be arranged with a capacity in the order of 200,000 barrels processing capacity per day. This represents some 8.4 million gallons fuel such as synthetic diesel per day whereas the equipment contemplated in association with FIGS. 6, 6 (i), and 6 (ii), the production capacity of 1,000 barrels per day represents some 42,000 gallons per day. The equipment disclosed in association with FIGS. 6, 6 (i), and 6 (ii), can be arranged according to the outline of system components detailed in association with FIG. 7 wherein one or multiple system components can be installed to operate in parallel thereby providing for any production output capacity from 1,000 barrels per day or below, and upward to even as much as 50,000 barrels per day. A major benefit available with the arrangement of equipment as disclosed within this entire disclosure is the ability to produce multiple Fischer Tropsch fluids from a common syn-gas source which in turn having been produced by gasification of carbon derived from the reduction of multiple raw material sources such as biomass in the form of mulched green timber, mulched wheat straw, hay, or sawdust, from any sources even from timber pallets for example no longer useful due to breakage; timber from any building site no longer required, this can include discarded fencing materials, garden clippings, trees removed from any site such as close to housing endangered by the tree. The gasification equipment as shown in FIG. 6 will most preferably be arranged wherein the pressure vessel 6030 with heat exchanger 6010 is manufactured from the preferred material INCONEL, is utilized in the manner disclosed with inlet conduit 6044 transferring a fluid suspension comprising water and carbon particles with other dissolved gases and fluids derived from the biomass carbonizing process into the manifold arrangement comprising members 6049 and 6037 with metal balls (i.e. ball bearings) 6079, 6033, 6078, etcetera, and most preferably fluid metal 6028 chosen from a short list of metals such as nickel and the alloys from which it can be manufactured. The liquefying of said metal nickel may also include other metals such as zinc, and/or tin with silver and aluminum and any other metal listed below with the corresponding melting point and boiling point listed therewith. The intermittent explosive effects of the water component of the carbon particle suspension transferred in the direction shown by the arrows 6083 and 6085 will project the metal balls upward and away from the lower region of each pressure vessel such as 6116, 6077, and 6075, shown in FIG. 6 (i). The temperature and pressure within the enclosed space of each pressure vessel can be maintained so as to not exceed the boiling point of the molten metals by a margin of +50 degrees C. or less and the resultant environment within the elongated free space surrounding the inlet conduit such as 6044 shown in FIG. 6 and within the outer pressure vessel such as 6030 can enhance the reaction between water and carbon significantly so as to not only ensure the complete reaction of all carbon occurs completely with excessive super heated steam transferred from within the enclosed space of each pressure vessel through the array of extraction conduits such as 6002, and 6056, in FIG. 6 in the direction shown by arrows 6000, and 6054, respectively or in the direction shown by arrows 6092, and 6108, of FIG. 6 (i).
The heat exchanger 6010 of FIG. 6 and heat exchangers 6112, 6114, and 6110, of FIG. 6 (i), being located in the upper region of each pressure vessel and heat exchanger assembly provides a lower temperature by the transfer of heat there from by way of a suitable fluid provided at a suitable pressure in an enclosed circuit wherein the fluid transferred into port 6062 in the direction shown by arrow 6064, and subsequently after reticulation through channels such as 6012 of heat exchanger 6010 through extraction conduit 6005 in the direction shown by arrow 6006. All fluids so extracted are then transferred through a second (not shown) suitable heat exchanger arranged to reduce the temperature of the enclosed fluid ensuring that the temperature within each pressure vessel in the upper section of each pressure vessel is lower than the temperature for example in space 6028 wherein a molten metal allows the super heated steam bubbles with carbon particles contained therein to transfer in the direction shown by arrow 6023 and 6080. In this way the vaporized metal or metals carried upward by the upward stream of syn-gas in the direction shown by arrows 6020 and 6074 will condense within space such 6008 allowing the syn-gases to be extracted in the direction shown by arrows 6004 and 6060 through conduits 6002 and 6056 while the condensed metal with ball bearing such as 6070 will drop downwardly in the direction shown by arrow 6018 and into the liquefied metal pool in space 6028. It should be noted that molten metals such as fluid of space 6028 can be extracted via a conduit connecting directly with the liquid metals within space 6028 and in a manner that will carry with the fluid metal extracted there from the ash solids that remain after reaction between carbon particles and super heated steam. Extracting liquid metals in this manner which shall most preferably be collected at a suitable location above the liquid metal accumulating in the lower region of the pressure vessel and will most preferably collect the freshly condensed metal as it flows down the inner surface of the outer wall 6072 of pressure vessel 6030. Liquid metal carrying ash in this way with minimum quantities of carbon can be separated by way of a suitable centrifuge prior to returning the molten metal into the inner region of each pressure vessel.
Any suitable liquid, element, or compound, can be used however most preferably tin or zinc, or a mixture thereof, followed by nickel or silver are preferred. Any salt can be used that has a melting point within the temperature range required which shall be maintained by electrical elements installed around the vessel such as 6088 and 6036 shown in FIGS. 6 and 6086 enclosed within walls 6084 of FIG. 6 (i). The approximate dimensions of vessel such as 6116 shall be approximately 10 feet to 20 feet in length or height wherein the member 6037 is located at the bottom of the inside space and the member 6050 is mounted at the uppermost “crown” of the dome at 6001 and the internal diameter of the round cross section of the vessel 6072 shall be about 12 inches or more or less. The conduit 6044 is profiled so as to be locked in place having a length almost the full internal length of the enclosed space and the diameter of approximately 2 inches or more or less, comprising a heavy wall round tube constructed of suitable INCONEL® high temperature resistant steel mating with a centrally disposed extension of member 6034 which is held in position between the inlet conduit 6044 and the lowermost member 6037 and arranged with space to allow free flowing of fluid in the direction by arrows 6083 and 6085. Most preferably the pressure vessel will be provided with an entry port and most preferably manufactured in two parts, an upper and a lower section connected at a flange portion of each member, bolted together with clamping means and a gasket between the upper and lower sections. Insulation around the outer surface that would otherwise be exposed comprising a 6 inch thick insulating layer 6090, 6073, and 6071 of pressure vessel 6116, 6077, and 6110 respectively. A suitable storage pressure vessel can be provided to allow all syn-gas produced within each pressure vessel to be stored in a common or series of pressure vessels.
Referring now to FIG. 6 (ii) an equipment arranged to synthesize ethylene (C2H4), ethanol (C2H6O), any diesel (having a formula of C10H22 and up to C15H32) composition or paraffin (C25H52) is shown. Other materials such as naphtha (C8H18) from which olefin plastics (including polypropylene and polyethylene), can be manufactured by processing syn-gas comprising a suitably proportioned blend of hydrogen and carbon monoxide. The proportion of hydrogen: carbon monoxide (H2:CO) can be adjusted by several methods including the injection of hydrogen gas having been derived by electrolysis of water wherein hydrogen would be collected from one electrode and oxygen released to atmosphere from the other electrode. In the event that a larger proportion of carbon monoxide is required, the hydrogen gas can be readily separated by way of membrane filtering, but in each case a suitable catalyst is required to ensure the desired synthesis of the particular organic compound occurs. Such a catalyst may be any of the following: aluminum oxide (AL2O3); iron oxide (FE2O3); magnesium oxide (MGO); chromic oxide (CR2O3); silicon carbide (SIC); iron nitride (FE2N); silicon oxide (SIO2); sintered iron (FE); potassium oxide (KO); and cobalt oxide (CoO). Most preferably however, for the production of predominantly diesel, a combination of iron, copper, magnesium, and potassium oxides, and silica gel broken into pieces of 1 to 3 mm in size, with 1% bismuth oxide, and then sintered by heating to a temperature at which the catalyst is close to melting point and then pressed together in a mold which can be profiled as required, and when manufactured for use with the equipment shown in FIG. 6 (ii) profiled in a disc shape having a centrally located aperture approximately one third the diameter. Sintered iron favors the production of ammonia whereas iron nitride favors naphtha production, and magnesium oxide and silica oxide favors paraffin production. Cobalt oxide should be included with all catalysts. It has been demonstrated that sintering by hot press and spark plasma, the most ideal particle size is in the order of 100 microns and the catalyst blend should be heated in the presence of pure argon or gas atomized with pure argon.
The equipment shown in FIG. 6 (ii) comprises a drum shaped pressure vessel 836 with a centrally located hollow shaft 829 mounted within sealed bearings or bushings wherein the hollow shaft 829 is press fitted with a solid shaft 830 and welded together. The assembled shaft 829 and 830 then allow fluids to be transferred via a central cavity 852 within shaft 829 with passageways isolated so as to allow the transfer of a recycled temperature controlling fluid to heat exchangers arranged in alternate layers with sintered catalysts suitably profiled to provide a stack arranged with shaft 829 centrally disposed therein. More particularly a parallel sided drum shaped vessel 836 with round cross sectional profile, enclosed ends and extraction ports for surplus gas and synthesized fluids, and an internal diameter greater than the overall diameter of centrally disposed heat exchanger and catalyst segments, allowing the rotation of the central shaft via a drive in the direction shown by arrow 828, fixed to solid shaft 830, which in turn transfers a rotating force rigidly to hollow shaft 829 mounted in sealed bearings at 807 and 831.
Pressure vessel 836 comprising a parallel sided circular profile drum with flat ends, having centrally disposed bearing mounts 831 and 807, shaft 829, with solid stub shaft 830 connected to suitable driving means (not shown), is mounted as a single stand alone equipment or multiple drums can be located in a rigid frame so as to provide an operating structure wherein each drum is operated in parallel with adjacent drums. Syn-gas, having been suitably trimmed, blended, and/or adjusted to provide a stream of gas having a selected ratio of proportioned carbon monoxide and hydrogen gas is transferred into conduit 802 in the direction shown by arrow 800 at a suitable pressure of approximately one or two atmospheres or greater and temperature in the range of about 180° C. to 240° C.; the reactions occurring in the production of the Fischer-Tropsch liquids are generally exothermic. Said syn-gas passes via conduit 843 and into and through each permeable catalyst annular ring (alternately layered and “sandwiched” between a pair of temperature controlling heat exchangers) such as 814, 816, 820, and 834. Arrows 811 and 845 show the branching pathway of catalyst at location 814 and 816 respectively, and other arrows show the entry point of said syn-gas into the space filled by permeable catalyst. Suitably temperature controlled fluid such as glycol blended with water and optional selected stabilizers, is transferred into conduit 848 at a suitable pressure in the direction shown by arrow 846, through universal connection 804, and along passageway 851 and 805 in the direction shown by arrows 850 and 810. Each heat exchanger is profiled into a flat, parallel upper and lower sided, annular ring similar to each catalyst layer and in this way the temperature of the catalyst layers is controlled by temperature controlled (by way of an external heat exchanger) fluid medium transferred through each heat exchanger by way of a suitable positive displacement pump and transferred through each heat exchanger such as at the layers indicated by the numbers 844, 842, 840, 818, 837; in this way the fluid flows outwardly along the upper side of, for example, disc 813 and simultaneously through similar passageways in all other heat exchangers such as 838 and 818, and then inwardly along the underside of each disc shown by arrow 825, after reversing direction of flow indicated by arrow 823, subsequent to passing along the upper side of the adjacent disc to arrow 821. Temperature controlling fluid is then extracted via a universal connection 827 through conduit 826 and to an external temperature controlling heat exchanger in the direction shown by arrow 833. Syn-gas transferred via the most preferably sintered disc members sandwiched under a selected pressure between each alternate heat exchanger layer by “0” rings such as 817 and 815 so as to ensure the syn-gas passes through catalyst, reacting exothermically as the gases react while being transferred through the porous passageways of each sintered, disc profiled catalyst. The centrifugal force generated by the rotating shaft with all assembled discs therewith, encourages the rapid transfer of liquids such as diesel away from the disc catalysts and into the free space immediately inside the inner surface of outer vessel 836. Said fluid diesel, or other such fluid formed by exothermic reaction of the syn-gas within the sintered catalysts clamped between alternate pairs of heat exchanger discs, flows via the free space in a downward direction toward arrows 832 and 824 indicating the direction of flow of the resultant liquids produced by the exothermic reactions and through conduit 830 and 858, and in the direction shown by arrows 860 and 862. In this way, selected diesel renewable fuels can be manufactured in quantities according to the availability of biomass derived carbon. Excess syn-gas will preferentially transfer in the direction shown by arrows 808 and 806 via conduit 864 which can then be recycled via conduit 802.
Referring to FIG. 7 a block diagram illustrates the operating sequence of the BTL (Bio-mass to Liquid) equipment disclosed herein where the modified extrusion system 5000 with input hopper 5002 shown in a plan view of a typical equipment layout in block diagram format. Arrow 5004 indicates the direction of flow of biomass and arrow 5006 represents the transfer conduit from extruder 5000 to a suitable enclosed and sealed ball mill, hammer mill or other suitable pulverizing equipment wherein the stream of carbon transferred via conduit 5006 is pulverized to provide a powdered carbon “flour”. Any remaining volatiles, gases and/or vapors generated during the biomass extruding process in extruder 5000 are transferred into vessel 5018 via conduit 5022 and subsequently compressed prior to recycling through the system. A suitable enclosed blender 5018 is provided to allow suitable mixing of water and/or glycerol transferred therein via conduit 5016 via high pressure pump 5024. The prevailing pressure within pressure vessel 5018 must be maintained at or above the pressure within steam reformer 5012. Pressure vessel 5018 is disclosed in detail herein above in association with FIG. 1 Items 58 and 26 and further comprises a temperature-controlled condenser and/or diffuser through which gases can be transferred prior to blending with other fluids such as glycerol and/or water provided in quantities sufficient to dissolve any of the fluids transferred therein via conduit 5022. Temperature-controlling system 5026 is connected via conduits represented by arrows 5028 and 5030 wherein a suitable medium such as chilled water and/or glycerol or any other suitable refrigerant is transferred to vessel 5018 by a conduit represented by arrow 5028 after being suitably chilled to a temperature of approximately 32 F. to 40 F. The resulting fluid is transferred via conduit 5032 into high pressure pump 5034 and thence at elevated pressure such as 3,000 psi or more or less via conduits 5020 represented by arrow 5020 to blender 5036 wherein carbon “flour” and said fluid are blended together prior to injection to steam reformer 5012. In another preferred embodiment said carbon “flour” may be transferred into vessel 5018 blended together with fluids therein prior to transfer to the steam reformer via conduit 5020 after transfer through high pressure pump 5034. Steam reformer 5012 is disclosed in detail herein in association with FIG. 3. However it should be noted that two or any number of pressure reformers as disclosed in association with FIG. 3, can be combined together to provide a single steam reformer wherein syn-gas is produced comprising hydrogen gas and carbon monoxide in a single stream.
Cyclone 5038 is coupled directly to steam reformer 5012 via conduit 5040 and ash is extracted via conduit 5042 and suitable flow regulator which may comprise a compression screw within a suitably sized extruder as shown in FIG. 1 as item 152. Ash produced by the reaction within steam reformer 5012 any be combined with suitable fertilizer and used in agriculture according to agricultural procedures. Equipment including extruder 5000 and steam reformer 5012 require a suitable heat source which most preferably will be hydroelectric tidal, wave or wind turbine generated. Extruder 5000 comprises a suitably profiled Archimedes screw within a matching barrel about which most preferably suitable band heaters are installed. The temperature required to operate said extruder 5000 is in the order of 500F however the temperature required for steam reformer 5012 may be as high as 950 C but most preferably between 600 C and 850 C. Alternatively a percentage of carbon “flour” may be combusted within steam reformer 5012 by injecting oxygen gas continuously and in proportion to the stream of super heated steam and carbon “flour” causing combustion of up to 30% to 50% of the carbon “flour”. This will produce carbon dioxide gas in large quantities which can be transferred with Syn-gas to pressure vessel 5046 and collected in polyamine fluid as disclosed above in association with. The carbon dioxide gas is separated thereby from the stream and the remaining gases will comprise substantially all hydrogen and carbon monoxide which are transferred via conduit 5046 to centrifugal reactor 5048 wherein the syn-gas is converted to diesel and/or naphtha and/or methane or Ammonia or more particularly, as may be required according to the system operator and according to the catalysts provided therein such as Colbalt catalyst (Cobalt Oxide i.e. CO3O4) used in the production of Ammonia. Other catalysts may be Tin oxide, Palladium oxide, Platinum oxide, or Titanium oxide. Synthesized diesel fuel can then be pumped via conduit 5050 into storage vessel 5052. Naphtha may be transferred to polypropylene-producing equipment 5054 via conduit 5060 and then transferred via conduit 5056 to storage vessel 5058. If a polyolefin polymer such as polyethylene is to be manufactured, which could be produced by equipment located at 5054, the polyethylene polymer can be transferred via conduit 5062 to storage vessel 5064 and, after retention in storage for a while, distributed to customers directly there-from.
Referring now to FIG. 8 and FIG. 9, a cross section through a pressure vessel 920 manufactured from heavy wall INCONEL 625 insulated with a vacuum at 930 retained by outer vessel 934 with further heavy layer of any suitable insulation 932 such as glass wall. Both ends of pressure vessel 920 are dish shaped and an extraction conduit 900 is located centrally at the upper end of vessel 920 with insulation 904 enclosing conduit 900. A heavy heating element 926 manufactured from INCONEL 600 is connected to anode 922 and cathode 924. Enclosed in space 918 is a substantial volume of molten aluminum maintained at between about 900 and 1300 degrees C. A floating separator 916 separates area 918 from area 908. Said separation wall 916 is provided with a skirt 934 and the entire skirt and separation member floats on the upper level of molten aluminum 918. Separation member 916 is fitted with a metallic lip seal 936 and can be manufactured from any suitable material but most preferably will be manufactured from nickel aluminum. Member 916 separates molten aluminum contained in space 918 from space 908. Space 928 represents about 25% of the volume of vessel 920 and a conduit 912 with opening 935 is provided such that opening 935 is adjacent to the center region of separator 916. Space 908 is filled with super heated steam such that after transfer in the direction shown by barrow 912, distilled water including recycled water, is transferred via conduit 910 and directly onto the surface of nickel aluminite separator 916. Said distilled water transferred through conduit 910 is most preferably heated prior to transfer into chamber 908 via nozzle 935. The orientation of the equipment shown in FIG. 8 with base 929 enclosed within any suitable enclosure and one that will ensure the upright disposition of the entire assembly such that heating element 926 can be actively heating the contents of space 918, i.e. molten aluminum. It should be noted that the electrical power required to operate the equipment shown here in connection with FIGS. 8 and 9 can be sourced during the off-peak hours of any day and the heat required to operate the process wherein the temperature of molten aluminum 915. Four arrows such as 933 and 931 indicate the direction of convection currents within the space 918 which is transferred upward by convection currents and via the nickel aluminite member 916 by transfer there through. The inner surface of member 915 at 940 can be lined with nickel aluminite and floating member 916 and 934 is located adjacent to the exit port 935 of conduit 910 such that when distilled water, which may also be recycled water, is pumped through conduit 910 at a substantially constant rate, distilled water is projected directly at the upper surface of member 916. FIG. 8 (i) is a cross section through the wall of vessel 920, 907, and 942, represented by insulation 967, vacuum 968, and outer wall of vessel 964, and inner vessel wall 960 with nickel sheeting 963 located in position and against aluminum 967, both held firmly against inner surface of inner vessel 960 with vacuum space 968 and outer vessel 964 enclosing vacuum of space 968. Insulation 967 is enclosed by outer most vessel cover 990. The total thickness of nickel sheet 963 and aluminum sheet 960 is approximately 0.1 inches. Inner vessel 968 is manufactured from INCONEL 600 or 625 while outer vessel 964 can be manufactured from carbon steel of approximately 2 inches in thickness or any other stainless grade if required. Insulation layer 967 is in close contact with outer vessel 964 and can be provided having any thickness 966 and may be 12 inches to 18 inches in thickness. Outer cover 990 provided in panels is fixed around the outer surface of insulation 967 so as to prevent damage to the insulation layer. Referring again to FIG. 8 conduit 910 with opening 935 directs distilled water there through in the direction of arrow 912 and directly at the upper face of separation member 916. This member allows heat derived from the molten aluminum in space 815 and upon contact of distilled water there with, vaporization occurs immediately and super heated steam generated thereby expands outwardly and upward in the direction shown by arrows 914 and 937. The super heated steam may circulate within the space 908 until it escapes via conduit 900 in the direction shown by arrow 902. This super heated steam can be transferred directly to conduit 9006 of FIG. 9 in the direction of arrow 9004 or alternatively to input conduit 1200 in the direction shown by arrow 1202 of FIG. 9 (i). Arrows 937 and 914, and 909, 944, 942, and 907, indicate the swirling nature of super heated steam within chamber 908. The purpose of the equipment illustrated in FIG. 8 is to provide a means of storing heat at a very high temperature such as between 900 degrees C. and 1250 degrees C. Aluminum melts below 900 degrees C. and can therefore be retained in a molten condition within space 918 for an extended period. Member 916 with skirt 934 can be manufactured from nickel aluminite and is arranged such that it will float on the surface of molten aluminum within vessel 920. Electricity most preferably will be generated by hydroelectric turbine, wind powered generators or nuclear power plants methods and when used to heat elements 926 within space 921; the stored heat within the high temperature molten aluminum therein can be used within a range of not less than 900 degrees C. and up to 1250 degrees C. It is important that the aluminum medium is retained in a molten fluid phase but below boiling point or vaporization. The quantity of heat consumed will therefore not exceed the total quantity of BThU's retained by said molten aluminum 915. Most preferably disused aluminum smelting plants located within the PNW and in particular, for example at the Dalles, Oreg., Longview or Goldendale, Wash. The existing electrical supply to the aluminum smelting sites can be, most preferably, utilized to supply the electrical power needed to heat the molten aluminum as required with the equipment described in association with FIG. 8, to an upper limit but below boiling point of the aluminum. The prevailing pressure within space 908 shall not exceed a safe level. Sufficient heat would be available by heating a aluminum smelting pots Heat Referring now to FIG. 9 super heated steam transferred from conduit 900 of FIG. 8, in the direction shown by arrow 902 is transferred via suitable insulating conduit under pressure to input conduits 9034, 9016, and into conduit 9006 after blending with a suitably proportioned quantity of carbon powder/flour. A forged or other suitably profiled INCONEL tube 9038, closed at one end and open at a flanged upper open end, is connected to a flanged end of extension 9010 and attached together at flanges 9022 rigidly and conduit 9044 is substantially filled with quartz sand so as to fill the lower ⅓rd of the full length of the two conduit sections 9044 and 9038. Super heated steam heated to over 1,000° C., or more or less, is transferred into jacket 9030 via conduit 9034 in the direction of arrow 9032 to facilitate the heating of and then maintain the temperature of enclosed space 9012 and the contents thereof at the same temperature (over 1,000° C., or more or less), while suitably pulverized carbon and superheated steam is transferred along conduit 9010 in the direction of arrow 9004. Simultaneously, superheated steam at over 1,000° C., or more or less, is transferred into space 9014 via conduit 9016 in the direction shown by arrow 9018 in order to maintain the temperature of conduit 9044 and its contents at over 1,000° C., or more or less. More particularly, members 9033 and 9014 are attached directly to each other by way of a clamp at 9022 and jackets 9038 and 9046 are provided around the outer surface and perimeter of inner conduits 9010 and 9045. Super heated steam is provided in 3 input streams to ensure the temperature of enclosed space 9012 and of vessel 9038 and with inlet port 9034 and exit port 9040. Steam travels in the direction shown by arrows 9032 and 9042. Quartz sand is used to provide a diffusing and mixing effect or mechanism at 9024, 9026, and 9028.
In this way carbon flour ground and pulverized to a “flour” consistency, and with the largest particles under about 30 microns across, and as may otherwise be disclosed herein disclosed above, can be provided at low cost for conversion to syn-gas for subsequent conversion to synthetic diesel and olefins as may be required. Syn-gas is transferred in the direction shown by arrow 9005 through conduit 9008 and transferred there from to the next operation which will likely be transferred into a Fischer Tropsch. A further purpose of the present equipment is to provide a suitable heat storage at above normal temperature. Referring now to FIG. 9 (i) a configuration showing a steam reforming equipment is shown. An inner “L” shaped conduit 3012 is provided with a direct communication to a source of carbon 3014 and a gas injection nozzle 3020. A vertical section of said conduit 30010 is provided and in the direction of arrow 3015 allowing the vertical transport of carbon material along section 3001. Vertical section 30010 is enclosed by heat exchanging member 30011 with an inlet conduit 3006 allowing the injection thereof via 3008 and extraction in the direction shown by arrow 30006 along conduit 30004. An outer vessel 3004 encloses the upper section of said first transfer and micro style conduit 30010. Super heated steam transferred in the direction of arrow 3008 via conduit 3006 of heat exchanger 30014 arranged in an inverted condition over the upward transfer tube 30010 and outer vessel 3014 encloses heat exchanger 30014 so as to control the equipment. Hopper 30015 containing carbon 3014 provides a continuous stream of carbon flour in the direction shown by arrow 3016 and transfer via screw member installed within conduit 3013. In this way carbon flour is released into the upper side of conduit 30060. Simultaneously super heated steam transferred in the direction shown by arrow 3018 via conduit 3020 and in to space 3060 thereby causing the mixing of super heated steam traveling in the direction of arrow 3055 with carbon flour transferred from hopper 3015. Blended super heated steam and carbon flour is transferred under pressure via conduit 3012 and upward through conduit section 30010 in the direction shown by arrow 3015 and is carried via space 3013 in the direction shown by arrow 3019 and then in the direction shown by arrow 3022 within outer vessel 3004 and into space 3014 by which time the reaction between super heated steam and carbon has caused the production of carbon monoxide gas and hydrogen gas. Mass flow control 3028 controls syn-gas transferring via conduit 3002 in the direction shown by arrow 3000 and directly into Fischer-Tropsch fluids synthesizing reactor.
In another preferred embodiment, Fischer-Tropsch fluids, such as synthetic diesel (i.e. CnH2n+2, where n=any number from 1 through, typically, to a number less than 100), can be synthesized from a syngas comprising a first gas, (1) carbon monoxide component most preferably derived from the endothermic reduction of carbon dioxide exhaust gas (from any suitable exhaust gas stream (4) source) toyield relatively high purity carbon monoxide, with the second syngas gas, (2) hydrogen component being derived by collection from the isolated cathode of selected electrolytic cell in a process comprising, most preferably although not essentially, the acid (H2SO4) electrolyte enhanced electrolysis of water.
The carbon monoxide and hydrogen gas can be produced with the following process:
I Production of Carbon Monoxide Gas (1);
Carbon derived from any suitable bio-mass source such as coal (including at least an adequate quantity of sulfur containing coal) is used as a fuel to generate electricity in a typical coal fired power plant. Heat is generated by combustion of coal comprising substantially carbon wherein atmospheric oxygen is fed in a continuous stream of fluid air enabling the combustion of carbon in air (or alternatively) pure oxygen to produce a continuous stream of carbon dioxide (3) causing the following exothermic reaction:
C+O2CO2+Heat [Exothermic reaction];
The above reaction occurs in the presence of all other atmospheric gases comprising at least 78% nitrogen with other inert atmospheric gases and 21% oxygen.
The carbon monoxide component, of the syngas feedstock required for the presently proposed Fischer-Tropsch reaction synthesizing Fischer-Tropsch fluids (including diesel), is most preferably derived by the high temperature reduction of carbon dioxide (a substantially pure CO2 gas stream may be derived for use as disclosed herein, by transferring the entire referenced exhaust stream (4) through a membrane gas separation process so as to eliminate mostly all other atmospheric gases most particularly all atmospheric nitrogen gas (N2)) combined with added carbon particulates no greater than 100 microns across the widest distance of any particular particle; most preferably, a stream of heated, pressurized CO2 gas can be extracted from any suitable exhaust stream while it remains at a high temperature, immediately subsequent to the combustion reaction, via a multiplicity of Inconel conduits, each of suitable cross sectional area (about 0.075″ diameter) and heated by any suitable external means but most preferably by radiant electric heating arranged around the full outer surface of the Inconel conduit; lower temperatures will enable the reaction set out below, however, most preferably the CO2 gas is heated to 1,000° C. The hot, exhausted CO2 gas is transferred through the heated conduit and a suitably proportioned, continuous, pre-heated (to about 1,000° C.) and suitably pressurized stream of pulverized carbon particles, as described above, most preferably within a minimum quantity of carbon dioxide gas, to assist in the efficient flow of the carbon particulates, at a combined selected rate of mass flow suitably proportioned so as to enable complete reduction of the CO2 to CO according to the following reaction:
Approx 1,000° C. Heat+C+CO2→2CO [Endothermic reaction]
Substantially the entire carbon dioxide content of any particular exhaust stream can be converted to carbon monoxide by providing a suitably corresponding quantity of pulverized carbon most preferably sourced from a suitable grade of black coal.
II Production of Hydrogen Gas (2) by Electrolysis of Water
Electrolysis (of water) in an “electrolysis cell,” will decompose water into hydrogen gas and oxygen gas which can then be collected separately with, in this instance, the hydrogen component provided in a correspondingly proportioned stream of suitable mass flow to match the above stream of CO, thereby resulting in a combined relative proportion of CO and H2 according to a selected value.
It should be noted that to conduct a substantial electric current so as to decompose water at a selected and substantial rate, an electrolyte is required to reduce resistance. An electrolysis cell can consist of an electrode or parallel plate construction utilizing two (or more) electrodes, (preferably manufactured from an inert metal such as platinum), submerged in an electrolyte. The latter utilizes two or more plates, also usually an inert metal, with water situated between them, with an electrolyte added.
Electrolysis of water results in the decomposition of water into hydrogen and oxygen as follows:
The electric current disassociates with water molecules into hydroxide (OH−) and hydrogen (H+) ions.
In the electrolytic cell, hydrogen ions accept electrons in a reduction reaction that forms hydrogen gas at the cathode;
Cathode (reduction): 2H2O(I)+2e −→H2(g)+2OH−(aq)
At the anode, hydroxide ions undergo an oxidation reaction and give up electrons to the anode to complete the circuit and form water and oxygen gas:
Anode (oxidation): 2H2O(I)→O2(g)+4H+ (aq)+4e −
hence decomposing water into oxygen and hydrogen;
Overall reaction: 2H2O(I)→2H2(g)+O2(g)
The number of hydrogen molecules produced is therefore twice the amount of oxygen molecules. Assuming equal temperature and pressure for both gases, the hydrogen gas has twice the quantity of moles as oxygen.
The most commonly used anion is SO4 2−, as it is very difficult to oxidize.
Standard potential for oxidation of this ion to the peroxydisulfate ion is −0.22 volts.
Frequently used electrolytes:
Strong acids such as Sulfuric acid (H2SO4),
2H2O→2O2+2H2 [Endothermic reaction]
In another preferred embodiment a method of manufacturing Fischer-Tropsch Fluids of selected formulation can be produced by way of “co-generation,” with the generation of electric power by typical coal fired electricity generating plants which are now most predominantly installed throughout the USA and Canada (and China) such as at Nanitoke, Ontario in CA, or Taylor County, Florida, USA, however, in this instance the system will be an enclosed loop. Oxygen generated from the electrolysis of water will be collected and used as the only oxygen source and therefore the reactions will be “balanced” as follows:
C+O2→CO2+Heat [Exothermic reaction];
Approx 1,000° C. Heat+C+CO2→2CO [Endothermic reaction];
Overall electrolysis reaction: 2H2O(I) 2H2(g)+O2(g)
Carbon fuel comprises—2×C atoms to react with corresponding 2×O atoms derived from electrolysis.
It is also contemplated that in order to generate syngas wherein H2 and CO are in proportions of 4H2:4 CO; the reactions would therefore be as follows:
Either 1) or 2);
1) Heat (generated by electrical discharge)+C+CO2→2CO
2) Or Heat (generated by combustion of C with O2 derived from electrolysis—by the method described below)+3C+O2+CO2→4CO
3) 2C+½O2+CO2→3CO; or
NB: The type of reactors which are typically used for this type of high temperature reaction are generally restricted to about 600° C.-800° C.; The reactor required to enable the reactions proposed in 1) thru 4) will be facilitated when the conditions provided within the reactor are maintained at up to 2,000° C. and pressurized up to 5,000 psi;
Such a reactor will require ceramic lining using molded and thermo-set Al2O3 (commonly known as Alumina) within a pressure vessel manufactured from a suitably thick Inconel plate,
Wherein the hydrogen and oxygen gas components are generated by electrolysis, as follows:
5) DC Electricity+2H2O→2H2+O2
One method for generating the H2 syngas component is described in a white paper entitled Highly Efficient Hydrogen Generation via Water Electrolysis Using Nanometal Electrodes by QuantumSphere, Inc., dated Sep. 15, 2006.
For purposes of this disclosure, the term “coupled” means the joining of two components (electrical or mechanical) directly or indirectly to one another. Such joining may be stationary in nature or movable in nature. Such joining may be achieved with the two components (electrical or mechanical) and any additional intermediate members being integrally formed as a single unitary body with one another or with the two components or the two components and any additional member being attached to one another. Such joining may be permanent in nature or alternatively may be removable or releasable in nature.
Referring to FIG. 10 a cross section through a cyclone 1015 is shown. The cross section extends in a vertical plane dissecting the vertical centerline of the apparatus including the connecting upper conduit 10144, the lower connecting conduit 10126 and also the horizontal centerline of the integrated input volute 10107. Insulation panels such as 10106, 10102, 10121, 10138, 10142, and 10141, are arranged to completely enclose the apparatus and high temperature electric heating elements (providing a suitable means of heating the vessel and connecting conduits 10144, 10141 and 10126, all enclosed within said insulation bats, up to 2,000° C.) which are located at the interface between the insulated panels and the outer surface of the cyclone member 10105 and more specifically fixed to the inner surface of the insulation bats such as at 10113 of insulating bat 10106. Therefore, said electric heating elements are located adjacent to the outer surface of said cyclone member 10105, in very close proximity thereto, however spaced apart there from so as to provide a suitable gap between the heating elements and the outer surface of said cyclone member 10105 and in such a manner so as to ensure contact does not occur between the electric heating elements and the cyclone, in spite of their close proximity together. The close proximity is most suited to enhancing the effects of radiated heat from said heating elements which can heat the enclosed members up to well above 1,000° C., however, for metal cyclone assemblies this would be a maximum operating temperature for such members manufactured from Inconel (a registered trademark). Said cyclone has a diameter 10112 (D) as shown by double headed arrow 10135 and the length of a section of said cyclone 10105 where walls 10116 and 10136 are parallel for a distance shown by arrow 10133 and marked at 10114 with the letter “L.” A volute 10107 with centerline 10108 is shown at the upper end of said cyclone 10105 with conduit 10141 connected thereto conveniently so as to provide a means of transferring selected fluids in the direction shown by arrow 10140; immediately upon transfer around path defined by said volute 10107 as shown by the arrows 10137 which indicate a direction of fluid flow within the vessel 10105 and in the direction shown. Conduit 10144 is located at the upper end of member 10103 and shares a common centerline with cyclone 10105, extending upwardly along a perpendicular path, away from cyclone vessel 10105. At the lower end of the cyclone member 10105 a smaller conduit 10126 is shown connected directly to the vessel 10105. The sloping sides with inwardly facing walls 10134 and 10120 comprise a lower section of member 10105 and the sloping sides allow solid phase particles to be guided downwardly in the direction shown by arrows 10132 and 10124 thereby providing a means of directing solid phase ash into the internal space of conduit 10126 and downwardly in the direction shown by arrow 10128. In operation the heating elements surrounding the central circular section 10116 of said cyclone which are mounted closely to said section outer surface radiate heat in such a manner as to elevate the temperature of said cyclone 10105 to approximately 1,000° C. Heat is transferred through the walls of said cyclone 10105 such that when solid particles that have been carried via conduit 10141 and volute 10110 and at such velocity so as to cause the rotating of matter around the inner surface such as at 10116 and 10136 of said cyclone and in such a manner that particles such as carbon which may be carried in a gas such as carbon dioxide or a vapor such as super heated steam will be heated to a correspondingly high temperature and when the vapor driving said particles is super heated steam, a reaction occurs wherein syngas comprising H2 and CO is produced. Also, when carbon dioxide is employed as the carbon particle carrier gas, the carbon particles will react fiercely with the gases provided therein such as carbon dioxide to form carbon monoxide; most preferably a quantity of hydrogen gas (H2) will be included with CO2 to inhibit production of coke and deposition thereof onto internal vessel surfaces. When for example, finely granulated carbon particles carried by fluid comprising super heated steam, are transferred in the direction shown by arrow 10140, and then arrows 10137 and in such a manner so as to cause rapid rotation of said particles around parallel to and in direct contact with the inner surface at 10116 and 10136, heat transferred through the wall of vessel 10105 causes a heating of said carbon particles to such an extent that syngas comprising hydrogen and carbon monoxide is formed and then carried upward, via conduit 10144 in the direction shown by arrows 10103 and 10100 through conduit 10144, while ash, which may be produced if said carbon particles are impure, is transferred in the direction shown by arrows 10132 and 10124 and then through conduit 10126 in the direction shown by arrow 10128. In this way, finely pulverized carbon particles (<10 micron) can be carried in a fluid/gas such as super heated steam in the direction shown by arrows and at such a velocity and temperature that contact heating enables production of carbon monoxide and hydrogen which can be separated from any residual ash derived from impurities in the carbon particulates. Said syngas transferred via said conduit 10144 can then be transferred to a Fischer Tropsch reactor and converted into fluid diesel or other Fischer Tropsch liquids. In another preferred embodiment carbon particles and carbon dioxide are transferred (plus hydrogen gas to inhibit carbon production and deposition onto the inner surfaces of containing conduits and vessels) in the direction shown by arrow 10140 and after suitable heating of the carbon particles in the presence of a suitable catalyst such as nickel aluminite (NiAl) and an alkali such as K2O (Potassium oxide). A reaction between the carbon dioxide gas and the carbon particulates will produce carbon monoxide only, which can then be transferred via conduit 10144 and any residual ash transferred via conduit 10126 in the direction shown by arrows 10128. Said carbon monoxide gas can then be blended with a measured and proportioned quantity of hydrogen gas which may have been derived from electrolysis of water. The production of carbon (coke) can be minimized when the equipment employed to reduce the carbon dioxide to carbon monoxide has the ability to reduce temperature rapidly after a short exposure to high temperature and high pressure. The combined gases of carbon monoxide and hydrogen gas can be converted to fluid fuels such as diesel, methanol, jet fuel, and any other suitable selected fuel in a Fischer Tropsch reaction. Fuel manufactured in this manner is renewable and can be produced most economically.
Referring now to FIG. 11 the side elevation of various industrial processes are represented in diagrammatic format. Processes represented in FIG. 11 include a coal fired electricity generating plant 11106, wind turbine 11126 mounted at the top of tower structure 11128 with transformer 11124 connected to power lines 11122 which in turn connect to electrolysis equipment 11153, in turn connected via gas carrying conduits delivering oxygen to the coal fired plant via 11220 and hydrogen via conduit 11196 to Fischer Tropsch gasification equipment 11188, to which syngas carbon monoxide is transferred via conduit 11174 in the direction shown by arrow 11168; a Fischer Tropsch reactor 11176 is connected via a series of suitably sized conduits to an electrically heated (via cables 11160) CO2 reforming apparatus 11189 and the Hydrogen output conduit (11136) of equipment 11153 (designed to decompose water via electrolysis utilizing sulfuric acid (H2SO4) electrolyte with electricity supply from wind turbine 11126 and 11128 via power supply cables 11122).
The American way of life and the associated culture is presently under threat by the relatively sudden increase in energy costs. Fuel costs are higher than ever along with related shipping and travel costs; this has transpired while US coal fired electricity generating plants are strained to their limits supplying electricity to the US power grid delivering electricity to all major and minor centers of the USA. The apparent shortage of fluid fossil fuels from American owned sources has transpired into sudden and significant cost increases with the threat of ever more expensive fossil fuel derived gasoline and diesel is driving many endeavors to devise processes for producing renewable fuels such as biodiesel and ethanol. However opportunities to manufacture diesel fuel in addition to jet fuels from the exhaust streams of electricity generating plants, both coal and/or gas fired, are clearly an opportunity that can relieve the upward pressure on gasoline prices and it is a purpose of the present invention to provide a method whereby refined Fischer Tropsch processes for fluid fuels production can be employed in the manufacturing process by the carbon dioxide reforming of coal wherein the CO2 is sourced from exhaust streams emitted from most coal fired electricity plants in the USA. It should be noted that a coal fired plant burning some 50,000 tons of coal per day releases some 180,000 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, correspondingly. With the discovery that so called greenhouse gases are detrimentally affecting global climate patterns, it is clear that if diesel fuel or any suitable Fischer Tropsch liquid fuel can be manufactured using the carbon dioxide streams as a major ingredient for a fuel production system could be achieved then this would reduce greenhouse gas emissions with obvious benefit. The present invention is designed to provide a means for the production of liquid fuels such as diesel and jet fuel from, in major part, carbon dioxide exhaust gases, as described above, emitted, in particular from coal fired electricity generating plants.
The reactions 1) through 3) as set out below represent those in which we are interested and which will enable the recycling of carbon dioxide gas into Fischer Tropsch liquids where the first (1). Shows carbon monoxide production; the second (2). Shows syngas production with a predominance of hydrogen gas; the hydrogen and carbon monoxide gases (with residual carbon dioxide and water vapor) is most preferably maintained at a selected temperature and pressure, transferred to a Fischer Tropsch reactor containing suitable Nickel, Iron or Cobalt based catalyst thereby facilitating the production of a wide range of synthetic diesel formulations and/or “cetane” values plus other Fischer Tropsch liquids which can then be separated as needed:
1). Heat**+3C+CO2→2CO+2C; alternatively: Heat**+3C+CO2+H2→2CO+2C+H2;
Carbon particles and carbon dioxide maintained at a high temperature (up to 2,000° C.) and high pressure (up to 5,000 psi) are injected into a series of enclosed ceramic (manufactured from Al2O3 otherwise known as alumina) tube sections (tubes are about 0.25″ Diameter arranged end to end and bonded with a suitable adhesive) comprising a total length of about 24′ with the ceramic tubes arranged in groupings of for example 2×2 (4) tubes which are supported by suitable ceramic members and enclosed within an insulated and water cooled, Inconel tubular profiled pressure vessel. A second 2×2 (4) series of enclosed ceramic tubes of greater diameter (1.5″ Dia.) are connected to said first set of (2×2) 0.25″ Dia tubes at a confluence and supported also, by suitable ceramic members within a continuation of said insulated, water cooled, Inconel tubular profiled pressure vessel with Hydrogen and water injectors arranged to inject combined, average proportions as shown in 2) below, thereby yielding corresponding proportions of CO and H2 as shown.
[Heat**; derived from the partial combustion of bio-mass reduced to carbon particles (or any other suitable source such as by discharging electricity via a suitable metal element to generate said heat) and oxygen from atmospheric sources or electrolysis of water—see below—or most preferably from wind turbine generated electricity which can be discharged to generate heat in a tightly enclosed and insulated pressurized vessel];
Hydrogen [derived from # 3) below] and water are injected into reaction tubes at the location indicated above, also a component of hydrogen gas may be added to the feedstock so as to inhibit coke production and the deposition thereof onto the catalysts or internal vessel or equipment surfaces.
2). Syn-gas production with a predominance of H2:-2CO+2H20+3H2+2C=4CO+5H2
3). Electricity*** (Electrolysis)+2H20→2H2+O2
[Electricity***; generated, most preferably, from wind driven turbines];
Oxygen gas, (O2 can be derived from any suitable source), in this instance generated by way of electrolysis as indicated above, is separately transferred to a blending station and mixed with a continuous stream of carbon dioxide (derived from exhaust gases) so as to produce a blended gas stream comprising approximately 20% Oxygen and the balance of approximately 80% Carbon dioxide. The stream of blended gas is transferred to the (for example) combustion chamber of a boiler driving a steam turbine to drive a suitable generator in electricity production. In this way atmospheric nitrogen is not present in the reactions shown in 1) through 3) above, thereby eliminating production of oxides of nitrogen which have been associated with damage to the environment on earth.
Syngas as shown in reaction 2) above can then be transferred to a Fischer Tropsch reactor with suitable catalysts arranged therein so as to benefit and enhance diesel production.
Referring again to FIG. 11, railroad carriages 11206 and 11204 carrying coal (or any suitable bio-mass) 11208 and traveling in the direction shown by arrow 11210, are unloaded in building 11104 immediately prior to use to fire steam boilers which in turn drive powers turbine 11106. Exhaust stack 11108 having been capped at 11110 enables the transfer of all exhaust gases which, after displacement of atmospheric nitrogen gas, is predominantly carbon dioxide or a mixture of carbon dioxide and nitrogen, via conduit 11111 in the direction shown by arrow 11112 and into steam scrubber 11228. Carbon dioxide having been separated from any other gases in the exhaust stream, and after scrubbing to remove all unwanted matter such as any traces of sulfur, sodium, calcium or any other materials etcetera, is transferred in the direction shown by arrow 11120 via conduit 11118 and via conduits 11116 in the direction shown by arrow 11114 to compressor 11121. CO2 gases may be chilled and compressed or merely concentrated into heavier vapors but whichever method is used, it is preferable that a flow of dense carbon dioxide gas will be carried via conduit 11130 in the direction shown by arrow 11132 and from conduit 11130 into reformer equipment via conduit 11152 in the direction shown by arrow 11144. The apparatus shown comprises a series of four ceramic conduits mounted perpendicular to the base chambers 11166 and 11150 as well as upper chambers 11156 and 11154. Carbon dioxide transferred via conduit 11152 and into chamber 11150 is combined with a measured quantity of pulverized carbon having a particulate size less than 5 microns so that it can be carried with relative ease in the CO2 stream via conduit 11152 and along ceramic conduit 11194 and then into chamber 11154. Conduit 11194 and 11192 are manufactured from suitable ceramic tube derived from aluminum oxide (AL22O3) and can withstand high temperatures such as 2,000° C. but cannot tolerate high pressures, therefore, given that most preferably the pressure of gases transferred with pulverized carbon particles into conduits 11194 and 11192 is between 2,000 psi and 5,000 psi the entire apparatus containing said ceramic conduits is enclosed in a pressurized housing shown as members 11190, and 11193, which also provides some insulation. Conduits 11192 and 11194 are enclosed within insulated segments surrounding each of the tubes and electrical heating elements are arranged to have contact with insulation and fixing means to the insulation enclosing each conduit. Said heating elements enclosing conduits 11192 and 11194 are arranged in close proximity to the external surface but are not in direct contact therewith. In this way radiant heat can be transferred across a small gap between said conduits and the heating elements and in such a way that the temperature within said conduits can increase to approximately 2000° C. Radiant heating elements are provided and electrical power via cables 11160 with electricity provided, in this instance, by said wind turbine 11126 mounted onto column 11128. In this way, electrical energy can be most preferably provided from a wind turbine mounted to column 11128 and this energy can then be converted, in effect, to liquid fuel. In another preferred embodiment a measured quantity of oxygen can be provided via conduit 11152 in the direction shown by arrow 11144 and into column 11194 after transfer via enclosure 11150. Oxygen provided in this way can create heat generating combustion within conduit 11194 thereby reducing and even eliminating the need for electricity otherwise transferred via cables 11160. Hot gases and particulates carried into enclosure 11154 via conduit 11194 are transferred into enclosure 11156 before transfer into conduit 11192 within which a pressure of up to 5,000 psi and temperature from 1,000° C. and up to 2,000° C. results in the burning of any remaining oxygen and corresponding quantity of carbon which is then converted to carbon dioxide and assuming sufficient carbon is available and then to carbon monoxide prior to transfer into enclosure 11166, and from there via conduit 11162 in the direction shown by arrow 11164. Gases transferred via conduit 11162 in the direction shown by arrow 11164 will comprise almost entirely carbon monoxide which is then transferred into Fischer Tropsch vessel 11188 via conduit 11174 in the direction shown by arrow 11168. Simultaneously with transfer of carbon monoxide gas into vessel 11188, a suitable quantity of hydrogen gas is transferred via conduit 11172 in the direction shown by arrow 11170 having been derived via electrolysis of water using electrolysis equipment 11153 with water.
Referring to apparatus 11153, which comprises an electrolysis system capable of extracting oxygen and hydrogen from water which will most preferably contain an electrolyte such as sulphuric acid (H2SO4) or sodium hydroxide (NAOH). Electrolysis apparatus 11153 is provided with a suitable supply of electricity via cables 11122 connected directly with a wind turbine generating electricity. The electrolysis apparatus is essentially divided into two segments, one containing the cathodes, and the alternate segment containing an anode array. Hydrogen gas collected directly above water contained therein is transferred in the direction shown by arrow 11134 via conduit 11136 in the direction shown by arrow 11138. Said hydrogen gas continues via conduit 11196 and 11148 and ultimately into conduit 11172 in the direction shown by arrows 11146 and 11170. Fischer Tropsch vessel 11188 is maintained at approximately 200° C. and pressurized at up to 4,000 psi and under these conditions conversion of syngas to diesel and other Fischer Tropsch fluids is most suited and 80% of the syngas transferred to vessel 11188 should convert quite readily. Vessel 11188 is provided with a diesel extraction conduit and port 11182 such that diesel fuel can be extracted in the direction shown by 11180 and stored in any suitable storage equipment (not shown) for automotive fuels and then distributed to consumers via existing service stations, while any remaining gas or “tail gas” is transferred via conduits 11186 and 11202 in the direction shown by arrows 11200 and 11178. Said tail gas can be transferred to the furnace of the coal fired generation plant where it will burn readily within the furnace of the electricity generation plant. It must be noted that in order that the Fischer Tropsch reactions to occur in such a balanced way and enable profit to be made, air cannot be used when providing oxygen to facilitate combustion within the coal fired boiler at 11106. Instead a blend of about 80% recycled exhaust carbon dioxide and 20% oxygen produced with the electrolysis of water in apparatus 11153 is transferred via conduit 11234 and 11226 coupled directly to conduit 11220 and 11216 to said furnace and boiler 11106 which are isolated from atmosphere which will therefore eliminate the transfer of nitrogen gas into the boiler combustion chamber, along with coal 11208 transferred into power station via carriages 11206 and 11204 in the direction shown by arrow 111210. In this way, electrical energy, which has a very short “life”, can be stored by converting the electrical energy into controlled temperature heat and then applying the heat in a manner that will facilitate production of fuel by way of chemical reactions altering the spent exhaust gases or “medium”, carbon dioxide, which is changed in form to become part of a liquid fuel (or alternatively, gaseous fuel) by converting spent exhaust (CO2) into liquid fuel. While exhaust gases derived from the coal burning generation of electricity is a most suitable source of CO2 for conversion into liquid fuel such as synthetic diesel, other sources may also be suitable; in particular CO2 gas generated in the normal production of ethanol by fermentation of sugars extracted from corn is an eminently suitable source and also in the production of fossil fuels from crude oil large volumes of CO2 may be derived. This source is also suitable for use in production of synthetic fuels as described herein. Any source of CO2 available in sufficient quantity to justify the effort involved may be used as a raw material in the production of Fischer Tropsch fluids from syngas derived from any suitable source hydrogen and carbon monoxide derived from CO2 converted to carbon monoxide by reforming coal or any carbon source with said CO2 and wherein said hydrogen source can be from electrolysis of water or other source. Electrical power as may be cogenerated according to the process described in association with FIG. 11 can be transferred via cable 11102 for use by general industry and for any domestic purposes.
Referring once again to electrolysis apparatus 11153 it should be noted that purified water is transferred into the electrolysis apparatus via conduit 11158 in the direction shown by arrow 11232. Any suitable electrolyte such as sodium hydroxide or sulfuric acid can be blended therewith via injection apparatus 11230. All surplus oxygen and also unwanted synthetic fluids derived from the Fischer Tropsch reactions can be used to generate electricity by adding to fuel after transfer via conduits 11202 in the direction of arrow 11200 or via 11214 in the direction indicated by arrow 11212 and into the plant furnace.
In a preferred embodiment bio-mass in the form of “brewers mash” which is a by-product of ethanol production can be dehydrated and then used as a normal source of bio-mass material for synthetic diesel production in a similar manner as other bio-mass described above.
Carbon dioxide is generated in the normal fermentation process of corn during production of ethanol and can therefore be used as a source of CO2 gas for production of synthetic diesel as disclosed above.
Corn oil can also be extracted from the brewers mass and used in bio-diesel production as described in association with FIG. 12 below.
Referring now to FIG. 12, cross sections through various members, assembled together to provide a housing enclosing there within two vertically, opposed spring tensioned members. First member 1628 is fabricated from a suitable metal bar such as a 400 series stainless steel or high quality carbon tool steel comprising, as would be seen in end view, a round outer perimeter profile with coarse threads 1614 machined into a smaller diameter, centrally disposed extension 1735 shown in finished machined condition, threaded and attached to member 1736 enclosing a series of “O” ring seals such as 1616 provided around the perimeter of shaft 1620. A piston 1602 is fixed rigidly to shaft 1620 with cap 1606 suitably machined and attached firmly and fixed in place to member 1736 enclosing said piston 1602. Hydraulic oil 1612 of any suitable grade but most preferably of food grade type, fills an enclosed annular space located around shaft 1620 and between member 1736 and the under face of piston 1602. Piston 1602 is fitted with any suitable means of sealing such as “O” rings 1608 and 1610 held captive within machined annular slots 1604 and 1609. A pipe 1738 communicates directly between space containing hydraulic oil 1612 and a hydraulic oil pump (not shown) fitted with suitable valves all controlled via a suitably programmed PLC so as to, when and as required, pump oil via conduit 1740 within pipe 1738 in the directions shown by a first arrow 1742 whereby space containing oil 1612 would be reduced in volume and secondly in the direction shown by arrow 1744 whereby space containing hydraulic oil 1612 would tend to be increased. An opposing and similar, second set of members, attached to said first member 1628 at annular flange 1642 and secured with bolts such as 1636 and 1710 and matching nuts 1644 and 1712, all adjusted so as to clamp annular flanges 1642 and 1646 together in such a manner that a liquid tight seal is created at the contacting, annular, opposing, intimately contacting faces at 1635. Member 1660 comprises a machined member manufactured from suitable grade bar with hydraulic cylinder 1694 attached rigidly via coarse threads at 1696 and 1666 with suitably sized “O” rings 1692 and 1690 arranged so as to be held captive around rod 1670 which in turn is contained within a corresponding suitably drilled and reamed hole 1665. Rod 1670 is fixed rigidly at outermost end to a piston 1682 provided with annular machined slots 1675 and 1677 within which “O” rings 1684 and 1686 are held captive in such a manner as to provide a liquid tight seal between piston 1682 and piston bore 1674. At the opposite end of rod 1670 a machined and hardened, substantially hemi-spherical profiled member 1656 having conically profiled, “flat” faces machined to form the outer surfaces of said hemi-spherical member 1656. A cavity machined into member 1660 with annular ridges at 1704, 1697, and 1654, is profiled so as to provide contact between all ridges and said conically profiled flat outer surfaces at 1698, 1702, and 1699. A similar set of members comprising piston 1602, shaft 1620, and hemi-spherically machined member 1630 attached together rigidly and held captive within hemi-spherically profiled aperture with machine ridges 1737 corresponding within flat surfaces of conically machined segment 1728. A bushing 1729 is suitably machined and dimensioned so as to fit snugly within annular member 1734. A corresponding bushing also having intimate contact with the inner surface of member 1731 with annular profile arranged to enclose space 1650 while allowing members 1713 and 1711 to move in a restricted direction, parallel to the centerlines of rods 1668 and 1620, of either away from or toward each respective member.
The purpose of the assembled apparatus detailed in association with FIG. 12 is to provide a means of thoroughly mixing and homogenizing any collection and in any relative quantities of fluids, including triglycerides as required in bio-diesel production. Springs 1741 held within concentric, circular profiled slots, located within an outer ridge such as 1705 are machined in each member 1713 and 1711 are arranged to exert outward pressure against said members 1713 and 1711. Said coiled springs 1741 are arranged to be under constant compression, even in the most relaxed mode and therefore outward pressure resulting in the compression of member 1704 against ridges such as 1697, 1704 and 1654 and in correspondingly opposing locations, member 1728 exerts pressure against ridges such as 1737 are normal conditions and by pumping high pressurized hydraulic oil into spaces filled by hydraulic oil 1688 and 1612 add even greater pressure to members 1711 and 1713 in an outward direction such that high pressure contact between ridges 1737 for example, in member 1628 can be developed. In this way any fluid pumped in the direction shown by arrow 1732 via conduit 1730 or in the direction shown by arrow 1624 via conduit 1626 can pass via space 1715 in the direction shown by arrows 1618 and 1734 only by exerting sufficient pressure to lift member 1713 away from ridges such as ridge 1737 thereby allowing said fluid pumped into conduit 1730 to pass between face 1728 and ridge 1737. Any fluids transferred in this way via conduit 1730 and/or conduit 1626 will be substantially homogenized and similarly any fluids transferred in the direction shown by arrow 1664 through conduit 1662 are required to exert sufficient pressure so as to lift member 1711 in the direction shown by arrow 1701 and away from ridges such as 1704, 1697, and 1654, thereby substantially blending and homogenizing fluids transferred at sufficient pressure between the ridges such as 1697 of member 1660 and the flat conical surfaces such as 1702 and 1698 of member 1711 to separate the opposing members, allowing transfer there between.
Any suitable fluid such as triglyceride maintained at a temperature exceeding 70 degrees F., for example, can be injected, under suitably high pressure (say up to 5,000 psi), so as to be transferred via any conduit such as 1730, 1626, or via conduit 1662, will be homogenized after passing through the homogenizing apparatus shown in FIG. 12. Additional fluid may be transferred in the direction shown by arrow 1634 via conduit 1638 and into annular space 1723 and subsequently into space 1722, conduit 1718 or 1648, in the direction shown by arrow 1714. Apparatus shown in FIG. 12 can be used to homogenize any suitable fluids and most appropriately for a combination of fluids including at least one oil such as a triglyceride mixed with other agents such as ethanol or liquid carbon dioxide. Homogenization of triglycerides is effectively achieved by applying a variable and consistent hydraulic pressure within spaces 1612 and 1688 thereby providing a homogenizing effect to fluids transferred between member 1713 and 1628 or member 1711 against member 1660. Other pressurized fluids transferred via a conduit such as 1726 can be mixed thoroughly by transfer through space such as 1722 and subsequently into conduit 1718 after passing over ridge 1720 which can be arranged in a tight relationship with opposing depression at the inner end of conduit 1718.
In the manner described in association with FIG. 12 above, any selected fluids and in particular triglycerides with alcohols, such as ethanol or methanol, can be thoroughly mixed together and homogenized in such a way that will ensure the mixed condition, necessary in bio-diesel production, remains for sufficient time to allow reactions to occur so as to produce bio-diesel while held under a pressure of approximately 2,500 psi to 5,000 psi and at a selected and suitable temperature such as about 260° C.
The present disclosure has been described with reference to example embodiments, however workers skilled in the art will recognize that changes may be made in form and detail without departing from the spirit and scope of the disclosure. For example, although different example embodiments may have been described as including one or more features providing one or more benefits, it is contemplated that the described features may be interchanged with one another or alternatively be combined with one another in the described example embodiments or in other alternative embodiments. Because the technology of the present disclosure is relatively complex, not all changes in the technology are foreseeable. The present disclosure described with reference to the example is manifestly intended to be as broad as possible. For example, unless specifically otherwise noted a single particular element may also encompass a plurality of such particular elements.
It is also important to note that the construction and arrangement of the elements of the system as shown in the preferred and other exemplary embodiments is illustrative only. Although only a certain number of embodiments have been described in detail in this disclosure, those skilled in the art who review this disclosure will readily appreciate that many modifications are possible (e.g., variations in sizes, dimensions, structures, shapes and proportions of the various elements, values of parameters, mounting arrangements, use of materials, colors, orientations, etc.) without materially departing from the novel teachings and advantages of the subject matter recited. For example, elements shown as integrally formed may be constructed of multiple parts or elements shown as multiple parts may be integrally formed, the operation of the assemblies may be reversed or otherwise varied, the length or width of the structures and/or members or connectors or other elements of the system may be varied, the nature or number of adjustment or attachment positions provided between the elements may be varied. It should be noted that the elements and/or assemblies of the system may be constructed from any of a wide variety of materials that provide sufficient strength or durability. Accordingly, all such modifications are intended to be included within the scope of the present disclosure. Other substitutions, modifications, changes and omissions may be made in the design, operating conditions and arrangement of the preferred and other exemplary embodiments without departing from the spirit of the present subject matter.