A research team at the Department of Gas Processing, Hydrogen and Special Technologies in collaboration with the Research Center for Fundamental Problems of Thermophysics and Mechanics carried out theoretical and experimental studies in heat transfer, hydrodynamics, diffusion during pyrolysis of methane in a layer of molten tin.
The study is published in the International Journal of Hydrogen Energy.
In laboratory environments, when methane is heated to high temperatures it decomposes into carbon and hydrogen nanoparticles with unique physiochemical properties. Meanwhile, the among the methods for decomposition of methane that are currently used, the one that involves heating is the most energy efficient one during its transition from a layer of metal molts in reactors. The method is environmentally friendly, as it does not discharges carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
In terms of structure, the reactors that are used are vertically cylindrical filled with molten metal, the lower part of which has a nozzle to supply methane. Meanwhile, to design a reactor, it is important to pay special attention to its volume and height. This will allow methane during its transition through a layer of molten metals to heat up to pyrolysis temperature and completely decompose. Importantly, in this case, it is required to determine the speed of movement and concentration of methane, and the pressure and temperature of the methane mixture with tin over the entire height of the reactor. Therefore, it is required to solve the problem of interconnected mass and heat transfer.
Besides this, the research team undertook studies for methane pyrolysis through a film of molten tin on experimental stand designed for special purpose.