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Supersonic gas separator development

Grant number: 16/16157-4
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2016
Effective date (End): September 30, 2017
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Mechanical Engineering - Transport Phenomena
Principal researcher:José Roberto Simões Moreira
Grantee:Rafael Nass de Andrade
Home Institution: Escola Politécnica (EP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


High fraction of CO2 and other impurities in various natural gas sources, as oil wells and biodigesters, make a limitation from the energetic point-of-view of those sources. Especially in the context of the pre-salt layer, whose gas reserves are up to 60% mol/mol CO2, the development of system that is compact, efficient, requires low maintenance and can be applied in great depths are pressing. This project aims to optimize the separation process of natural gas' components through the development of an adjustable supersonic separator and an associated test bench, allowing the study of the effect of certain geometrical variations of the separator in the effectiveness of the separation of mixtures with different CO2 fractions. In the development phase, only a mixture of carbon dioxide and nitrogen will be used, gases that are abundantly used in trials due to their availability and security. The experimental bench is of fundamental importance for the validation of theoretical and computational models, since the interaction of phase shift phenomena, compressibility, among others complicate such analyzes. Its adjustable feature also allows the optimization study, by relating to each input which geometry maximizes the separation of the desired components.

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