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Process for Producing Ultra-High Purity (UHP) Oxygen from a Standard Purity Oxygen Supply Using Ion Transport Memebranes(ITM's)

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000031524D
Publication Date: 2004-Sep-28
Document File: 2 page(s) / 26K

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The IP.com Prior Art Database

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Process for Producing Ultra-High Purity (UHP) Oxygen from a Standard Purity Oxygen Supply Using Ion Transport Membranes

Oxygen can be recovered from air at high temperatures by passing hot, oxygen-containing gas, preferably air, over non-porous, mixed conducting ceramic membranes.  These membranes, known in the art generically as ion transport membranes (ITMs), utilize an oxygen partial pressure differential across the membrane to cause oxygen ions to migrate through the membrane.

Membranes can be fabricated as tubes or flat plates that are arranged in modules for efficient contact with the hot compressed air.  High-purity oxygen permeate and nitrogen-enriched non-permeate products are withdrawn from the modules.  A comprehensive review of ion transport membranes is given by J. D. Wright and R. J. Copeland in Report No. TDA-GRI-90/0303 prepared for the Gas Research Institute, September 1990. 

A small ITM Oxygen module and associated gas heating equipment can be used in conjunction with a standard-grade oxygen supply to produce an ultra-high purity oxygen stream without the addition of significant infrastructure to a customer’s site.  If small quantities of UHP O2 are required, a unit producing the UHP O2 from standard-grade O2 would reduce customers’ bottled gas inventories and eliminate bottle handling for UHP O2.  Alternatively, the unit could be used to fill a UHP cylinder from a standard cylinder.

ITMs are uniquely suited to on-site generation of UHP (99.9+%) o...