Carbon Adsorption/Membrane Regeneration Hybrid System

EPA Contract Number: 68D30081
Title: Carbon Adsorption/Membrane Regeneration Hybrid System
Investigators: Lokhavdwala, Kaaid
Small Business: Membrane Technology and Research Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Phase: II
Project Period: September 1, 1993 through March 1, 1995
Project Amount: $150,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase II (1993) Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air Quality and Air Toxics , SBIR - Air Pollution , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)


Current and future legislation will require U.S. industry to treat many low-concentration, organic solvent-containing air streams now being discharged to the atmosphere. Although carbon adsorption is a cost-effective, efficient treatment process for such streams, the regeneration step used to remove adsorbed organic from the carbon presents problems. Membrane Technology & Research, Inc., is developing a hybrid carbon adsorption/membrane vapor separation process that uses a membrane vapor separation system to regenerate the carbon bed. The organic compound is recovered as a pure product; secondary waste streams are eliminated. In the proposed process, both the carbon adsorption and membrane vapor separation technologies operate in their most favorable range.

The Phase I program demonstrated the feasibility of the hybrid carbon adsorption/membrane vapor separation process. The process was evaluated by using a small carbon drum to represent the carbon bed and a pilot-scale membrane system as the regeneration unit. The laboratory data were used to prepare an optimum process design and an economic and technical analysis. The analysis showed the process offers substantial operating cost advantages compared with steam regeneration. In Phase II, a 1,000-scfm proof-of-concept system will be constructed and operated in the laboratory and at a field site.

Supplemental Keywords:

RFA, Scientific Discipline, Air, Sustainable Industry/Business, Chemical Engineering, air toxics, cleaner production/pollution prevention, Sustainable Environment, Chemistry, Technology for Sustainable Environment, New/Innovative technologies, Engineering, Engineering, Chemistry, & Physics, membrane vapor separation, air pollutants, Chlorine, chlorinated alkanes, emission control technologies, ozone depletion, air pollution control, pollution control technologies, membrane technology , recovery, air pollution, emission controls, emissions, ozone depleting chemicals, gas treatment, treatment, recycling, innovative technology, innovative technologies, pollution prevention, air emissions, removal

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final

  • SBIR Phase I:

    Carbon Adsorption/Membrane Regeneration Hybrid System