Recovery Act - Recovery of Solvent from Solvent-Deasphalting Process by Novel Solvent-Resistant Nanofiltration Membranes
In crude oil refining, asphaltenes are removed from heavy oil fractions to upgrade the quality of oil by solvent-deasphalting process. Solvents used in the solvent deasphalting process are recovered by either flash evaporation or super critical extraction. These conventional solvent recovery processes are highly energy intensive because of the phase change involved in the separation process. The conventional solvent recovery processes are also capital intensive. Based on our experience with chemically resistant membranes, Compact Membrane Systems proposes to develop solvent-resistant nanofiltration membranes to recover solvents from the solvent deasphalting process. In nanofiltration, driven by applied pressure gradient, solvent permeates through NF membrane retaining high molecular weight compounds such as oil. Nanofiltration is a highly energy efficient technology compared to distillation/evaporation because of the fact that nanofiltration does not involve any phase change during the separation process. Preliminary lab and economical evaluations suggest that our novel nanofiltration membrane technology is superior to existing commercial technologies. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: Benefits of developing the proposed NF technology come from energy and capital savings by replacing the conventional technologies such as distillation and super critical extraction. If successful at developing NF membranes with superior solvent flux, oil retention, and thermal and chemical stability, it will have significant impact related to energy savings in many of the industrial processes using distillation. Specific focus of the program will be on reducing costs of solvent recovery from solvent deasphalting process.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Compact Membrane Systems, Inc.
335 Water Street Newport, DE 19804
Number of Employees: