Slurry bubble column reactors are used for a wide range of reactions in chemical and biochemical industry. In such a reactor, bubbles with a reactant gas is sparged into a suspension of liquid with solid catalyst particles. The slurry bubble column reactor is viewed as one of the most promising methods to produce synthetic fuels through the so-called Fischer-Tropsch process. However, a successful design and scale-up of slurry bubble column reactors require a complete understanding of multiphase fluid dynamics, i.e. phase mixing, and heat and mass transport characteristics. Researchers from Eindhoven University of Technology and University of Twente will use detailed computer simulations to obtain this understanding, combine experiments and computer simulations to understand the role of turbulence on structure formation in the gas and solid distribution, and develop an efficient large-scale simulation method for real large scale applications.
Project leader: Prof. Hans Kuipers