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Rapid gas hydrate formation process

United States Patent

January 15, 2013
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
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The disclosure provides a method and apparatus for forming gas hydrates from a two-phase mixture of water and a hydrate forming gas. The two-phase mixture is created in a mixing zone which may be wholly included within the body of a spray nozzle. The two-phase mixture is subsequently sprayed into a reaction zone, where the reaction zone is under pressure and temperature conditions suitable for formation of the gas hydrate. The reaction zone pressure is less than the mixing zone pressure so that expansion of the hydrate-forming gas in the mixture provides a degree of cooling by the Joule-Thompson effect and provides more intimate mixing between the water and the hydrate-forming gas. The result of the process is the formation of gas hydrates continuously and with a greatly reduced induction time. An apparatus for conduct of the method is further provided.
Brown; Thomas D. (Finleyville, PA), Taylor; Charles E. (Pittsburgh, PA), Unione; Alfred J. (Pittsburgh, PA)
U.S. Department of Energy (Washington, DC)
12/ 814,660
June 14, 2010
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENTAL SUPPORT The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to the employer-employee relationship of the Government to the inventors as U.S. Department of Energy employees and site-support contractors at the National Energy Technology Laboratory.