It has been reported in Chinese Journal of Catalysis (4(1983)1) that researchers at the Shanxi Institute of Coal Chemistry, Academia Sinica, Taiyuan, have investigated a fibrousalumina carrier for catalytic combustion processes.Using small experimental flow reactors, it was shown that fibrous-A1203-suppo~ted-Pt catalysts have higher metal dispersion, much higher activity and better sulfur resistance and heat resistance than other types of supported catalyst in the combustion of propylene and methane. A fibrous Al203 supported Pd-rare-earth catalyst was also found to be an efficient catalyst for the combustion of hydrocarbons. La-Promoted
It has been reported in Sciencia Sinica (9(1983)789) that researchers in the Chemistry Department, Beijing University, Beijing, have investiqated La 0 -promoted Ni-yA1203 catalysts for me ?a h nation reactions using x-ray diffraction. It has been shown that the maximum monolayer dispersion of NiO was increased in the lanthanurrpromoted materials. A La,O,-modified catalyst was also found koJhave smaller crystal size than had a sample without promotion by the rare earth oxide. This can explain the high activity and thermal stability of the promoted catalyst. A small amount of La203 was believed to be dispersed as a monolayer covering the carrier.
Linde AG "Variobar"
Construction is reported (Chem. Eng., Dec. 26 (1983)p.g) to have started of a new reactor for methanol synthesis which involves cooling coils situated within the catalvst bed. The new desiqn both controls Reaction temperature and recovers excess heat to produce process steam. Catalyst life is said to be extended because thermal shocks are prevented, the ooeratinq temperature beinq controlled by'the amount bf steam _ circulation. The olant is beins built bv Linde's US arm, Lbtepro Corporation at Georgia-Pacific Corporation's Plaquemine Chemical complex.
Volume 9 No. 3 - March 1984
1983 Kirkpatrick Awards
One of the "Honor Awards", made "to recognise outstanding group effort in developing significant engineering technology commercialised during the past two years", has gone tp Chemische-Werke Hills for its process for production of tert-butanol (TBA) and isobutylene. The first stage of this process (see Chem. Eng. Dec. 12 (1983) p.60, for a fuller descrintion) involves selective catalytic hydrat;on of isobutene in a liquid C4 mixture: CH Catalyst CH, I3 CH2 - ,C - Otl % = CH 2 + H 20 4o"-1000c' CH3' CH, The catalyst is a cation exchange ma'terial and a series of reactors are used to overcome miscibility problems associated with water-isobutylene streams. The process then produces pure TBA (or its azeotrope with water) or, by a second catalytic step involving an acidic catalyst, pure isobutylene. A second "Honor Award" soes to ICI for its "Pruteen" process for the production (using enzyme catalysts) of synthetic proteins from methanol.
EMP Butene Oligomerisation
E>:P (Enpetrol, Spain) have recently described a new process for the conversion of olefins obtained in C fractions into oligomers useful as gas0 4.ine components (Ingenieria Quimica, Nov. 1983, p.161). The oligomeric gasoline has a high octane number. The residual C fraction has a higher concentration o+l linear butenes and the isobutene fraction is reduced; it is used as a feedstock for maleic anhydride or acetic acid production and it can also be recycled to the olefins plant if the isobutene concentratjon is below 5% but it is also usable for the production of set-butyl alcohol, butadiene and other special-derivatives if the isobutene concentration is below 1%. The yields of the prncess are 45 wt% in the boiling range 85'-15O'C and 25 wt% in the ranqe lSOo240°C. No information'is given on the catalytic or process conditions but the catalyst is thought to be a strong acid in the form of a liquid or slurry which is mixed with the C4 fraction in stirred reactors.