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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: GR/S87553/01
Title: The developement and application of novel ceramic hollow fibre membrane reators for catalytic dehydrogenation reactions.
Principal Investigator: Li, Professor K
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Johnson Matthey
Department: Chemical Engineering
Organisation: Imperial College London
Scheme: Standard Research (Pre-FEC)
Starts: 01 October 2004 Ends: 30 September 2007 Value (£): 140,583
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Catalysis & Applied Catalysis Materials Characterisation
Reactor Engineering
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Manufacturing Chemicals
Related Grants:
Panel History:  
Summary on Grant Application Form
The research project centres on an innovative design for a catalytic membrane reactor.Use of a membrane reactor allows the continuous removal of hydrogen from the reaction zone during dehydrogenation reactions, thus offering the possibility of substantially increasing the efficiency of equilibrium-limited reactions of this type, minimising the generation of unwanted byproducts and producing the valuable byproduct of hydrogen.The innovative reactor involves the combination, for the first time, of several advanced, but individually proven, catalyst and membrane technologies with the novel ceramic asymmetric hollow fibre membranes recently developed by one of us. The project involves the development of the reactor and evaluation of its use for both chemical processing (conversion of propane to the valuable feedstock propene), and as the enabling technology for a means of hydrogen storage and transport (the reversible dehydrogenation of methylcyclohexane to toluene).The results of the project will aid the UK academic and industrial communities to be at the forefront of some of the key developments made possible by the invention of ceramic hollow fibres. A leading industrial company has described the design as, offering the prospect of combining technologies in a novel way that overcomes some of the 'showstoppers' which have so far prevented the development of an effective membrane reactor for dehydrogenation reactions.The project is a collaboration between Dr. Kang Li of the Dept. of Chemical Engineering at Imperial College, who is an expert in membrane fabrication, and Dr. Neil Boag (inorganic chemist) & Professor Ron Hughes (chemical engineer & expert in heterogeneous catalysis) of the Institute for Materials Research at Salford, all of whom have worked previously on membrane systems for hydrogen purification. Attached to the Salford team is an eminent consultant, Professor Geoffrey Bond, who is a physical chemist and an expert in heterogeneous catalysis. The industrial company Johnson Matthey is a partner in the project.
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Organisation Website: http://www.imperial.ac.uk