Dehydrogenation of ethylbenzene using CO2 - A process design study

Henk Van Den Berg*, Louis Van Der Ham

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The scope in this project is the design of a dehydrogenation process for ethylbenzene using CO2 as mild oxidant including a technical and economical evaluation. Compared to the conventional process this process has a more favorable equilibrium and can therefore be operated at a lower temperature and lower energy consumption. The design is based on the data of the most promising catalyst investigated which is Fe/Al/Zn (1/2/6) reported by Mimura (2002). Laboratory results show a single pass conversion of 26% with a selectivity to styrene of 91% for a CO2/ethylbenzene ratio of 11. The process is designed according to the systematic process synthesis techniques. Results show that the low conversion and especially the high CO 2/ethylbenzene ratio results in an unfeasible recycle flow. It is decided to reduce the CO2/ethylbenzene ratio to 2. The economic evaluation shows that the current margin of $200 between the product and raw material is too low and should be minimal $250. An alternative would be to increase the selectivity to minimal 93%. The available catalyst data such as selectivity, conversion and lifetime is limited and should be subject of further research especially at low CO2/ethylbenzene ratios.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)337-342
Number of pages6
JournalChemical engineering transactions
Publication statusPublished - 20 Aug 2010


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