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Microchannel Distillation of Jp-8 Jet Fuel for Sulfur Content Reduction

Feng Zheng, Victoria S. Stenkamp, Ward E. TeGrotenhuis, Xiwen Huang, and David L. King. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA 99352

In microchannel based distillation processes, thin vapor and liquid films are contacted in small channels where mass transfer is diffusion-limited. The microchannel architecture enables improvements in distillation processes. A shorter height equivalent of a theoretical plate (HETP) and therefore a more compact distillation unit can be achieved. A microchannel distillation unit was used to produce a light fraction of JP-8 fuel with reduced sulfur content for use as feed to produce fuel-cell grade hydrogen. The HETP of the microchannel unit is discussed, as well as the effects of process conditions such as feed temperature, flow rate, and reflux ratio.