Ultra-pure hydrogen production via ammonia decomposition in a catalytic membrane reactor

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In this work two alternatives are presented for increasing the purity of hydrogen produced in a membrane reactor for ammonia decomposition. It is experimentally demonstrated that either increasing the thickness of the membrane selective layer or using a small purification unit in the permeate of the membranes, ultra-pure hydrogen can be produced. Specifically, the results show that increasing the membrane thickness above 6 μm ultra-pure hydrogen can be obtained at pressures below 5 bar. A cheaper solution, however, consists in the use of an adsorption bed downstream the membrane reactor. In this way, ultra-pure hydrogen can be achieved with higher reactor pressures, lower temperatures and thinner membranes, which result in lower reactor costs. A possible process diagram is also reported showing that the regeneration of the adsorption bed can be done by exploiting the heat available in the system and thus introducing no additional heat sources.
Cechetto, Valentina, Luca Di Felice, Rocio Gutierrez Martinez, Alba Arratibel Plazaola, and Fausto Gallucci. “Ultra-Pure Hydrogen Production via Ammonia Decomposition in a Catalytic Membrane Reactor.” International Journal of Hydrogen Energy 47, no. 49 (June 2022): 21220–21230. doi:10.1016/j.ijhydene.2022.04.240.