Hydrogen production from natural gas, refinery gas, associated gas, naphtha, LPG or any mixture of these. Appropriate purity product (up to 99.999%) can be used in refinery upgrade processes, chemical production and metallurgy (direct reduction). Possible byproducts are export steam or electricity, depending on cost and/or efficiency optimization targets.
The hydrocarbon feedstock is admixed with some recycle hydrogen and preheated to 350–380°C. Sulfur components are totally converted to H2S at CoMo catalyst and then adsorbed on zinc oxide by conversion to ZnS. The desulfurized feed is mixed with process steam at an optimized steam/carbon ratio.
The desulfurized feed is mixed with process steam at an optimized steam/carbon ratio, superheated to 500–650°C and fed to the Lurgi Reformer. The feed/steam mixture passing the reformer tubes is converted at 800–900°C by presence of a nickel catalyst to a reformed gas containing H2, CO2, CO, CH4 and undecomposed steam. The reformed gas is cooled to approximately 33°C in a reformed gas boiler.
The Lurgi Reformer is a top-fired reformer with a low number of burners and low heat losses, almost uniform wall temperature over the entire heated tube length and low NOx formation by very accurate fuel and combustion air equipartition to the burners.
An adiabatic pre-reformer operating at an inlet temperature of 400–500°C (dependent on feedstock) may be inserted upstream of the feed superheater as a process option. Feedgas is partly converted to H2, CO and CO2 with high-activity catalyst; all hydrocarbons are totally converted to methane. The pre-reformer limits steam export to maximize heat recovery from the process and increases feedstock flexibility.
The CO in the reformed gas is shift-converted with an iron-chromium catalyst, increasing hydrogen yield and reducing CO content to below 3-vol.%. The shift gas is cooled to 40°C and any process condensate is separated and recycled to the process. The gas is then routed to the PSA unit, where pure hydrogen is separated from the shift-gas stream. Offgas is used as fuel for steam reforming.
Recovered waste heat from the reformed and flue gases generates steam, which is used as process steam
with the excess exported to battery limits. Turndown rates of 30% or even less are achievable. The control concept allows fully automatic operation with load changes typically 3% of full capacity/minute.
Licensor: Lurgi Oel-Gas-Chemie GmbH