In situ synthesis of SAPO-34 crystals grown onto α-Al2O3 sphere supports as the catalyst for the fluidized bed conversion of dimethyl ether to olefins
SAPO-34 is an excellent catalyst for the conversion of dimethyl ether (DME) to olefins, but because conventionally synthesized SAPO-34 crystals are too small to be used directly in a fluidized bed, they have to be used as, and have the disadvantages of, a spray-dried catalyst. In this study, SAPO-34 crystals were synthesized in situ to grow on the surface of small α-Al2O3 spheres to produce a zeolite catalyst for a fluidized bed reactor. The influences of the composition of the crystal gel and surface structure of the support were investigated. The catalytic performance of the zeolite crystals grown on the support (surface zeolite) for the conversion of DME to olefins was investigated in a fixed bed microreactor and a fluidized bed reactor. The experiments showed that these surface SAPO-34 crystals gave the same activity and product selectivity as conventionally synthesized free SAPO-34 crystals and a higher reaction rate (normalized to the weight of SAPO-34) than the spray-dried catalyst. In situ synthesis is a simple and effective way to produce a SAPO-34 catalyst for a fluidized bed reactor.
Graphical abstractSAPO-34 crystals in situ synthesized and grown under hydrothermal conditions on the surface of an α-Al2O3 support. The SAPO-34 crystals are tiny cubes easily distinguished from the support, but a magnified view indicated that most the of SAPO-34 crystals were imperfect cubes where the crystal faces conjoint to the support because these kept to the growth steps to affix itself on the support.Figure optionsDownload full-size imageDownload as PowerPoint slide
Journal: Applied Catalysis A: General - Volume 341, Issues 1–2, 15 June 2008, Pages 112–118