Engineering Design of Advanced H2 CO2 PD and PD/Alloy Composite Membrane Separations and Process Intensification


Setup for testing pre-engineering/pilot scale membranes. Source: WPI
Setup for testing pre-engineering/pilot scale membranes. Source: WPI
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Website:  Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Award Number:  FE0004895
Project Duration:  10/01/2010 – 03/31/2016
Total Award Value:  $7,506,477.00
DOE Share:  $6,004,678.00
Performer Share:  $1,501,799.00
Technology Area:  Gasification Systems
Key Technology:  Novel Technologies to Advance Conventional Gasification
Location:  Worcester, Massachusetts

Project Description

Worcester Polytechnic Institute will demonstrate hydrogen separation from coal-derived syngas using palladium (Pd) and Pd alloy membranes on porous metal supports. The goal of the project is to carry out a comprehensive engineering design for advanced hydrogen-carbon dioxide (H2-CO2) Pd and Pd-alloy composite membrane separations with process intensification technologies that reduce the number of unit operations required for H2 production from a coal (coal-biomass)-based syngas.

Project Benefits

The Worcester Polytechnic Institute hydrogen transport membrane (HTM) project targets improvements in H2-CO2 separation membrane characteristics, including higher permeability, higher selectivity, and lower membrane cost. Specifically, the project will include R&D in improved membrane design, leading to the demonstration testing of the process at the pre-engineering/pilot scale of 2 lbs/day of H2. Increased efficiency and directly resulting cost reductions come by operating the transport membranes at higher temperature (in combination with warm gas cleanup technology being developed). HTM technology will be versatile, applicable to both integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) with over 90% carbon capture, and having the ability to make chemical grade H2 for liquid fuel, chemicals synthesis, and polygeneration applications.

Contact Information

Federal Project Manager 
Darryl Shockley:
Technology Manager 
Jenny Tennant:
Principal Investigator 
Yi Ma:

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