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Recovery Act - Distillation Revisited: New Approaches to Energy Savings Using…

Award Information

Department of Energy
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2010 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
10 b
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Membrane Technology and Research, Inc.
39630 Eureka Drive Newark, CA 94560
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2010
Title: Recovery Act - Distillation Revisited: New Approaches to Energy Savings Using Integrated Distillation-Membrane Processes
Agency: DOE
Contract: 02-10ER85674
Award Amount: $150,000.00


Separations using distillation consume 5 to 6 quads of energy annually in the United States. We propose to develop a combination distillation-membrane vapor separation process that cuts the use of energy for distillation in half. Separation of aromatic/aliphatic mixtures, an important process in refinery and chemical operations, has been chosen as the first target application for this project. In Phase I, bench scale membrane modules will be made and tested with a model mixture: toluene/methylcyclohexane. Phase I work will confirm that modules capable of efficiently performing the target separations are stable at the operating conditions of use, and that process designs based on these results can deliver the expected energy and cost savings. In Phase II, a pilot scale system including a small distillation column will be built. The system will be used to optimize the membranes and membrane modules, and to demonstrate the process with complex refinery feed mixtures. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: Aromatic/aliphatic separations are used as the first step in the preparation of nine of the top 50 chemicals produced in the United States. Our technology could reduce the energy use of these separations by half.

Principal Investigator:

Richard Baker

Business Contact:

Elizabeth Weiss
Small Business Information at Submission:

Membrane Technology And Research, Inc.
1360 Willow Road, #103 Menlo Park, CA 94025

EIN/Tax ID: 942795892
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No