One of the largest providers of Coal-to-Liquid technology in the world, requested filter tubes for use in their Fischer-Tropsch reactors. The filters in this process must keep the valuable 20 micron catalyst inside the reactor while allowing the fluid to move on to the next stage. The reactor operates at a temperature of 270 °C, a pressure of 10 Bar and a pressure differential of 2-3 Bar. We were tasked with the job of developing and producing filter tubes that would outperform their existing filter solution while able to withstand the extreme conditions and harsh environments.
Our team worked with their engineers to develop several concept designs for testing. The diameter and length of the final product was a constraint, so other parameter of the filter tube were variable and would need to be tested. Several iterations of the filter, each with a different slot geometries geometry and wall thickness were developed and sent to their test reactor for testing. Early filter tubes had good initial results but eventually crushed under the high pressure. A slightly thicker filter tube would later be developed, tested, and achieve the desired results. From these tests, we were able to identify the necessary parameters and produce a filter tube to achieve the desired results for their process.
It was reported to us that the filter not only performs better initially than their existing solution, but more importantly maintains the necessary filtration over time for longer and in turn extends the replacement interval of the existing filters.