Increasing gas-solids mass transfer in fluidized beds by application of confined fluidization-A feasibility study
Journal article, 2019

Fluidized bed applications where the bed material plays an active role in chemical reactions, e.g. chemical looping combustion, have seen an increase in interest over the past decade. When these processes are to be scaled up to industrial or utility scale mass transfer between the gas and solids phases can become a limitation for conversion. Confined fluidized beds were conceptualized for other purposes in the 1960's but are yet to be applied to these recent technologies. Here it is investigated if they can prove useful to increase mass transfer but also if they are feasible from other perspectives such as pressure drop increase and solids throughflow. Four spherical packing solids, 6.35-25.4 mm in diameter at two different densities, were tested. For mass transfer experiments the fluidizing air was humidified and the water adsorption rate onto silica gel particles acting as fluidizing solids was measured. Olivine sand was used in further experiments measuring segregation of solids and packing, and maximum vertical crossflow of solids. It was found that mass transfer increased by a factor of 1.9-3.8 with packing solids as compared to a non-packed reference. With high-density packing, fluidizing solids voidage inside the packing was found to be up to 58% higher than in a conventional fluidized bed. Low density packing material favoured its flotsam segregation and with it higher fluidization velocities yield better mixing between packing and fluidizing solids. Maximum vertical cross-flow was found to be significantly higher with low density packing that fluidized, than with stationary high-density packing. Conclusively, the prospect of using confined fluidized beds for improving mass transfer looks promising from both performance and practical standpoints.

Fluidized bed

Confined fluidization

Active bed material

Fluidized-packed bed

Cold flow modelling

Chemical looping combustion

Oxygen carrier

Gas-solids mass transfer


Jesper Aronsson

Chalmers, Space, Earth and Environment, Energy Technology

David Pallarès

Chalmers, Space, Earth and Environment, Energy Technology

Magnus Rydén

Chalmers, Space, Earth and Environment, Energy Technology

Anders Lyngfelt

Chalmers, Space, Earth and Environment, Energy Technology

Applied Sciences (Switzerland)

20763417 (eISSN)

Vol. 9 4 634

Subject Categories

Energy Engineering

Chemical Process Engineering




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