US20040064007A1 - Method and system for regenerating catalyst from a plurality of hydrocarbon conversion apparatuses - Google Patents

Method and system for regenerating catalyst from a plurality of hydrocarbon conversion apparatuses Download PDF

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US20040064007A1
US20040064007A1 US10260263 US26026302A US2004064007A1 US 20040064007 A1 US20040064007 A1 US 20040064007A1 US 10260263 US10260263 US 10260263 US 26026302 A US26026302 A US 26026302A US 2004064007 A1 US2004064007 A1 US 2004064007A1
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catalyst
system
reactor
plurality
riser
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James Beech
Michael Nicoletti
James Lattner
Dennis Alexion
Peter Paik
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ExxonMobil Chemical Patents Inc
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ExxonMobil Chemical Patents Inc
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    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01JCHEMICAL OR PHYSICAL PROCESSES, e.g. CATALYSIS OR COLLOID CHEMISTRY; THEIR RELEVANT APPARATUS
    • B01J8/00Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes
    • B01J8/18Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes with fluidised particles
    • B01J8/24Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes with fluidised particles according to "fluidised-bed" technique
    • B01J8/26Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes with fluidised particles according to "fluidised-bed" technique with two or more fluidised beds, e.g. reactor and regeneration installations
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01JCHEMICAL OR PHYSICAL PROCESSES, e.g. CATALYSIS OR COLLOID CHEMISTRY; THEIR RELEVANT APPARATUS
    • B01J29/00Catalysts comprising molecular sieves
    • B01J29/90Regeneration or reactivation
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01JCHEMICAL OR PHYSICAL PROCESSES, e.g. CATALYSIS OR COLLOID CHEMISTRY; THEIR RELEVANT APPARATUS
    • B01J38/00Regeneration or reactivation of catalysts, in general
    • B01J38/04Gas or vapour treating; Treating by using liquids vaporisable upon contacting spent catalyst
    • B01J38/06Gas or vapour treating; Treating by using liquids vaporisable upon contacting spent catalyst using steam
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01JCHEMICAL OR PHYSICAL PROCESSES, e.g. CATALYSIS OR COLLOID CHEMISTRY; THEIR RELEVANT APPARATUS
    • B01J8/00Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes
    • B01J8/005Separating solid material from the gas/liquid stream
    • B01J8/0055Separating solid material from the gas/liquid stream using cyclones
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B01PHYSICAL OR CHEMICAL PROCESSES OR APPARATUS IN GENERAL
    • B01JCHEMICAL OR PHYSICAL PROCESSES, e.g. CATALYSIS OR COLLOID CHEMISTRY; THEIR RELEVANT APPARATUS
    • B01J8/00Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes
    • B01J8/18Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes with fluidised particles
    • B01J8/24Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes with fluidised particles according to "fluidised-bed" technique
    • B01J8/38Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes with fluidised particles according to "fluidised-bed" technique with fluidised bed containing a rotatable device or being subject to rotation or to a circulatory movement, i.e. leaving a vessel and subsequently re-entering it
    • B01J8/384Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes with fluidised particles according to "fluidised-bed" technique with fluidised bed containing a rotatable device or being subject to rotation or to a circulatory movement, i.e. leaving a vessel and subsequently re-entering it being subject to a circulatory movement only
    • B01J8/388Chemical or physical processes in general, conducted in the presence of fluids and solid particles; Apparatus for such processes with fluidised particles according to "fluidised-bed" technique with fluidised bed containing a rotatable device or being subject to rotation or to a circulatory movement, i.e. leaving a vessel and subsequently re-entering it being subject to a circulatory movement only externally, i.e. the particles leaving the vessel and subsequently re-entering it
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C10PETROLEUM, GAS OR COKE INDUSTRIES; TECHNICAL GASES CONTAINING CARBON MONOXIDE; FUELS; LUBRICANTS; PEAT
    • C10GCRACKING HYDROCARBON OILS; PRODUCTION OF LIQUID HYDROCARBON MIXTURES, e.g. BY DESTRUCTIVE HYDROGENATION, OLIGOMERISATION, POLYMERISATION; RECOVERY OF HYDROCARBON OILS FROM OIL-SHALE, OIL-SAND, OR GASES; REFINING MIXTURES MAINLY CONSISTING OF HYDROCARBONS; REFORMING OF NAPHTHA; MINERAL WAXES
    • C10G11/00Catalytic cracking, in the absence of hydrogen, of hydrocarbon oils
    • C10G11/14Catalytic cracking, in the absence of hydrogen, of hydrocarbon oils with preheated moving solid catalysts
    • C10G11/18Catalytic cracking, in the absence of hydrogen, of hydrocarbon oils with preheated moving solid catalysts according to the "fluidised-bed" technique
    • C10G11/182Regeneration
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C10PETROLEUM, GAS OR COKE INDUSTRIES; TECHNICAL GASES CONTAINING CARBON MONOXIDE; FUELS; LUBRICANTS; PEAT
    • C10GCRACKING HYDROCARBON OILS; PRODUCTION OF LIQUID HYDROCARBON MIXTURES, e.g. BY DESTRUCTIVE HYDROGENATION, OLIGOMERISATION, POLYMERISATION; RECOVERY OF HYDROCARBON OILS FROM OIL-SHALE, OIL-SAND, OR GASES; REFINING MIXTURES MAINLY CONSISTING OF HYDROCARBONS; REFORMING OF NAPHTHA; MINERAL WAXES
    • C10G3/00Production of liquid hydrocarbon mixtures from oxygen-containing or organic materials, e.g. fatty oils, fatty acids
    • C10G3/42Catalytic treatment
    • C10G3/44Catalytic treatment characterised by the catalyst used
    • C10G3/45Catalytic treatment characterised by the catalyst used containing iron group metals or compounds thereof
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C10PETROLEUM, GAS OR COKE INDUSTRIES; TECHNICAL GASES CONTAINING CARBON MONOXIDE; FUELS; LUBRICANTS; PEAT
    • C10GCRACKING HYDROCARBON OILS; PRODUCTION OF LIQUID HYDROCARBON MIXTURES, e.g. BY DESTRUCTIVE HYDROGENATION, OLIGOMERISATION, POLYMERISATION; RECOVERY OF HYDROCARBON OILS FROM OIL-SHALE, OIL-SAND, OR GASES; REFINING MIXTURES MAINLY CONSISTING OF HYDROCARBONS; REFORMING OF NAPHTHA; MINERAL WAXES
    • C10G3/00Production of liquid hydrocarbon mixtures from oxygen-containing or organic materials, e.g. fatty oils, fatty acids
    • C10G3/42Catalytic treatment
    • C10G3/44Catalytic treatment characterised by the catalyst used
    • C10G3/48Catalytic treatment characterised by the catalyst used further characterised by the catalyst support
    • C10G3/49Catalytic treatment characterised by the catalyst used further characterised by the catalyst support containing crystalline aluminosilicates, e.g. molecular sieves
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C10PETROLEUM, GAS OR COKE INDUSTRIES; TECHNICAL GASES CONTAINING CARBON MONOXIDE; FUELS; LUBRICANTS; PEAT
    • C10GCRACKING HYDROCARBON OILS; PRODUCTION OF LIQUID HYDROCARBON MIXTURES, e.g. BY DESTRUCTIVE HYDROGENATION, OLIGOMERISATION, POLYMERISATION; RECOVERY OF HYDROCARBON OILS FROM OIL-SHALE, OIL-SAND, OR GASES; REFINING MIXTURES MAINLY CONSISTING OF HYDROCARBONS; REFORMING OF NAPHTHA; MINERAL WAXES
    • C10G3/00Production of liquid hydrocarbon mixtures from oxygen-containing or organic materials, e.g. fatty oils, fatty acids
    • C10G3/62Catalyst regeneration
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C10PETROLEUM, GAS OR COKE INDUSTRIES; TECHNICAL GASES CONTAINING CARBON MONOXIDE; FUELS; LUBRICANTS; PEAT
    • C10GCRACKING HYDROCARBON OILS; PRODUCTION OF LIQUID HYDROCARBON MIXTURES, e.g. BY DESTRUCTIVE HYDROGENATION, OLIGOMERISATION, POLYMERISATION; RECOVERY OF HYDROCARBON OILS FROM OIL-SHALE, OIL-SAND, OR GASES; REFINING MIXTURES MAINLY CONSISTING OF HYDROCARBONS; REFORMING OF NAPHTHA; MINERAL WAXES
    • C10G2300/00Aspects relating to hydrocarbon processing covered by groups C10G1/00 - C10G99/00
    • C10G2300/40Characteristics of the process deviating from typical ways of processing
    • C10G2300/4093Catalyst stripping
    • CCHEMISTRY; METALLURGY
    • C10PETROLEUM, GAS OR COKE INDUSTRIES; TECHNICAL GASES CONTAINING CARBON MONOXIDE; FUELS; LUBRICANTS; PEAT
    • C10GCRACKING HYDROCARBON OILS; PRODUCTION OF LIQUID HYDROCARBON MIXTURES, e.g. BY DESTRUCTIVE HYDROGENATION, OLIGOMERISATION, POLYMERISATION; RECOVERY OF HYDROCARBON OILS FROM OIL-SHALE, OIL-SAND, OR GASES; REFINING MIXTURES MAINLY CONSISTING OF HYDROCARBONS; REFORMING OF NAPHTHA; MINERAL WAXES
    • C10G2400/00Products obtained by processes covered by groups C10G9/00 - C10G69/14
    • C10G2400/20C2-C4 olefins
    • YGENERAL TAGGING OF NEW TECHNOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENTS; GENERAL TAGGING OF CROSS-SECTIONAL TECHNOLOGIES SPANNING OVER SEVERAL SECTIONS OF THE IPC; TECHNICAL SUBJECTS COVERED BY FORMER USPC CROSS-REFERENCE ART COLLECTIONS [XRACs] AND DIGESTS
    • Y02TECHNOLOGIES OR APPLICATIONS FOR MITIGATION OR ADAPTATION AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE
    • Y02PCLIMATE CHANGE MITIGATION TECHNOLOGIES IN THE PRODUCTION OR PROCESSING OF GOODS
    • Y02P30/00Technologies relating to oil refining and petrochemical industry
    • Y02P30/20Bio-feedstock

Abstract

The present invention is directed to a method and system for integrating a catalyst regeneration system with a plurality of hydrocarbon conversion apparatuses, preferably, a plurality of multiple riser reactor units. One embodiment of the present invention is a reactor system including a plurality of reactor units, at least one reactor unit preferably comprising a plurality of riser reactors. The system also includes a regenerator for converting an at least partially deactivated catalyst to a regenerated catalyst. A first conduit system transfers the at least partially deactivated catalyst from the reactor units to the regenerator, and a second conduit system transfers regenerating catalysts from the regenerator to the plurality of reactor units. Optionally, catalysts from a plurality of hydrocarbon conversion apparatuses may be directed to a single stripping unit and/or a single regeneration unit.

Description

    FIELD OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention relates to a method and system useful in hydrocarbon conversion processes and particularly in oxygenate to olefin conversion reactions. More particularly, the method and system of the present invention is to a plurality of reaction units, each reaction unit preferably containing multiple riser reactors, and an integrated catalyst regeneration system. [0001]
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • Light olefins, defined herein as ethylene and propylene, serve as feeds for the production of numerous chemicals. Olefins traditionally are produced by petroleum cracking. Because of the limited supply and/or the high cost of petroleum sources, the cost of producing olefins from petroleum sources has increased steadily. [0002]
  • Alternative feed stocks for the production of light olefins are oxygenates, such as alcohols, particularly methanol, dimethyl ether, and ethanol. Alcohols may be produced by fermentation, or from synthesis gas derived from natural gas, petroleum liquids, carbonaceous materials, including coal, recycled plastics, municipal wastes, or any organic material. Because of the wide variety of sources, alcohol, alcohol derivatives, and other oxygenates have promise as an economical, non-petroleum source for olefin production. [0003]
  • The catalysts used to promote the conversion of oxygenates to olefins are molecular sieve catalysts. Because ethylene and propylene are the most sought after products of such a reaction, research has focused on what catalysts are most selective to ethylene and/or propylene, and on methods for increasing the life and selectivity of the catalysts to ethylene and/or propylene. [0004]
  • The conversion of oxygenates to olefins in a hydrocarbon conversion apparatus (HCA) generates and deposits carbonaceous material (coke) on the molecular sieve catalysts used to catalyze the conversion process. Excessive accumulation of these carbonaceous deposits will interfere with the catalyst's ability to promote the reaction. In order to avoid unwanted build-up of coke on molecular sieve catalysts, the oxygenate to olefin process incorporates a second step comprising catalyst regeneration. During regeneration, the coke is at least partially removed from the catalyst by combustion with oxygen, which restores the catalytic activity of the catalyst. The regenerated catalyst then may be reused to catalyze the conversion of oxygenates to olefins. [0005]
  • Typically, oxygenate to olefin conversion and regeneration are conducted in separate vessels. The coked catalyst is continuously withdrawn from the reaction vessel used for conversion to a regeneration vessel and regenerated catalyst is continuously withdrawn from the regeneration vessel and returned to the reaction vessel for conversion. [0006]
  • Conventionally, in order to produce an increased volume of desired product or to form different products, multiple, complete and independent reactor systems with independent separation vessels were required. Each reactor in the multiple, complete and independent reactor systems had its own regeneration system and/or stripping system. With multiple regeneration and/or stripping systems comes an attendant multiplication of costs. [0007]
  • It is therefore desirable to reduce number of regeneration units and/or stripping units in order to reduce the tremendous costs associated with implementing a plurality of multiple, complete and independent reactor systems. [0008]
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • This invention provides a method and integrated multiple reactor system for converting a hydrocarbon over a catalyst to one or more products while reducing the number of regeneration units and/or stripping units implemented therein. By reducing the number of regeneration units and/or stripping units, the costs associated with manufacturing and operating the multiple reactor system can be significantly reduced. [0009]
  • In one embodiment, the invention provides a reactor system including a plurality of hydrocarbon conversion apparatuses (HCA's), e.g., reactors or reaction units, and a regenerator for converting an at least partially deactivated catalyst to a regenerated catalyst. The reactor system also includes a first conduit system for transferring the at least partially deactivated catalyst from the HCA's to the regenerator, and a second conduit system for transferring the regenerated catalyst from the regenerator back to the plurality of HCA's. The first conduit system optionally includes a first stripping unit for stripping the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a first stripping medium. Also, the first conduit system optionally includes a second stripping unit for stripping the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a second stripping medium. The second stripping medium can be the same as or different from the first stripping medium. Ideally, the first and second stripping units strip at least partially deactivated catalysts from separate HCA's. One or more of the HCA's preferably are multiple-riser reactors. [0010]
  • In another embodiment, the invention provides a reactor system comprising a first reaction unit comprising a first plurality of riser reactors, and a second reaction unit comprising a second plurality of riser reactors, wherein each of the first and second reaction units has a first end into which a catalyst can be fed and a second end through which the catalyst can exit the reaction unit. The reactor system also includes a regeneration unit having a regeneration inlet and a regeneration outlet, and a regeneration line having a plurality of first line ends in fluid communication with the second ends of the first and second reaction units and a second line end extending to the regeneration inlet. A return line is also provided having a first return end in fluid communication with the regeneration outlet, a second return end directing a first portion of the catalyst to the first reaction unit, and a third return end directing a second portion of the catalyst to the second reaction unit. [0011]
  • An alternative embodiment of the invention is a method for forming olefins in a methanol to olefin reactor system. The method includes contacting in a first reaction unit a first oxygenate with a first catalyst under conditions effective to convert at least a portion of the first oxygenate to a first olefin and at least partially deactivating the first catalyst to form a deactivated first catalyst. The method also includes contacting in a second reaction unit a second oxygenate with a second catalyst under conditions effective to convert at least a portion of the second oxygenate to a second olefin and at least partially deactivating the second catalyst to form a deactivated second catalyst. The deactivated first catalyst and deactivated second catalyst are directed to a regeneration unit and are regenerated to form regenerated catalysts. A first portion of the regenerated catalysts is directed to the first reaction unit, and a second portion of the regenerated catalysts is directed to the second reaction unit. The deactivated first catalyst optionally contacts a first stripping medium in a first stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated first catalyst. Also, the deactivated second catalyst optionally contacts a second stripping medium in a second stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated second catalyst. Alternatively, the deactivated second catalyst optionally contacts the first stripping medium in the first stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated second catalyst. [0012]
  • Another embodiment of the invention provides a hydrocarbon conversion system comprising first and second pluralities of riser reactors, each of the riser reactors having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed and a second end through which the catalyst can exit the riser reactor. The hydrocarbon conversion system includes first and second catalyst retention zones provided to contain catalyst which can be fed to the first and second plurality of riser reactors, respectively. Additionally, the system includes first and second separation zones into which the second ends of the first and second pluralities of riser reactors, respectively, discharge the catalyst and products of a reaction conducted in the riser reactors. The separation zones are provided to separate the catalyst from the products of the reaction conducted in the first and second pluralities of riser reactors. First and second catalyst returns are also provided in fluid communication with the first and second separation zones, respectively, and the first and second catalyst retention zones, respectively. The hydrocarbon conversion system also includes a regenerator for regenerating the catalyst, and first and second catalyst outlet lines, each of the outlet lines having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed from the first and second pluralities of riser reactors, respectively, and a second end through which the catalyst can enter the regenerator. The system also provides first and second catalyst return lines, each of the return lines having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed from the regenerator and a second end through which the catalyst can enter the first and second pluralities of riser reactors, respectively. [0013]
  • Yet another embodiment of the invention provides a catalyst regenerator system comprising a regeneration zone for contacting an at least partially deactivated catalyst with a regeneration medium under conditions effective to form a regenerated catalyst, a plurality of catalyst inlets for receiving the at least partially deactivated catalyst from a plurality of reactor units, and a plurality of catalyst outlets for delivering the regenerated catalyst to the plurality of reactor units. A stripping zone or zones optionally is provided for contacting the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a stripping medium under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated catalyst. [0014]
  • In one embodiment, the invention is a method for regenerating catalyst comprising receiving an at least partially deactivated catalyst from a plurality of multiple riser reaction units, heating the catalyst under conditions effective to convert the at least partially deactivated catalyst to a regenerated catalyst, and directing the regenerated catalyst to the plurality of multiple riser reaction units. [0015]
  • Another embodiment of the invention provides a hydrocarbon conversion system comprising a plurality of reaction units, each unit comprising a plurality of riser reactors, and at least one regeneration unit coupled to the reaction units. The number of reaction units is greater than the number of regeneration units. Optionally, this embodiment also provides at least one stripping unit coupled to the reaction units, wherein the number of reaction units is greater than the number of stripping units.[0016]
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • FIG. 1 presents a partial cross sectional view of a hydrocarbon conversion apparatus of the present invention. [0017]
  • FIG. 2 presents a partial cross sectional view of another embodiment of the hydrocarbon conversion apparatus of the present invention. [0018]
  • FIG. 3 presents a partial cross sectional view of yet another embodiment of the hydrocarbon conversion apparatus of the present invention. [0019]
  • FIG. 4 presents a partial cross sectional view of still another embodiment of the hydrocarbon conversion apparatus of the present invention. [0020]
  • FIG. 5 presents cross sectional views of representative arrangements and configurations of the riser reactors and catalyst returns. [0021]
  • FIG. 6 presents a partial cross-sectional view of two multiple riser reactors and an integrated regeneration system in accordance with the present invention. [0022]
  • FIG. 7 presents a partial cross-sectional view of two multiple riser reactors and an integrated regeneration system including an integrated stripping system in accordance with the present invention.[0023]
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention provides a method and a system for converting a hydrocarbon over a catalyst to one or more products in a multiple reactor system while reducing the number of regeneration units and/or stripping units implemented therein. By reducing the number of regeneration units and/or stripping units, the costs associated with manufacturing and operating a multiple reactor system can be reduced. [0024]
  • During the catalytic conversion of hydrocarbons to various products, e.g., the catalytic conversion of oxygenates to light olefins (the OTO process), carbonaceous deposits accumulate on the catalyst used to promote the conversion reaction. At some point, the build up of these carbonaceous deposits causes a reduction in the capability of the catalyst to function efficiently. For example, in the OTO process, an excessively “coked” catalyst does not readily convert the oxygenate feed to light olefins. At this point, the catalyst is partially deactivated. When a catalyst can no longer convert the hydrocarbon to the desired product, the catalyst is considered to be fully deactivated. [0025]
  • In accordance with the present invention, catalyst is withdrawn from a plurality of hydrocarbon conversion apparatuses (HCA's), e.g., reactors or reaction units, and is directed to at least one regeneration unit. Preferably, at least one of the HCA's is a methanol to olefin (MTO) conversion apparatus. The catalyst is partially, if not fully, regenerated in the at least one regeneration apparatus. By regeneration, it is meant that the carbonaceous deposits are at least partially removed from the catalyst. Desirably, the catalysts withdrawn from the HCA's are at least partially deactivated. The remaining portion of the catalyst in the HCA's is re-circulated without regeneration, as discussed below. The regenerated catalyst, with or without cooling, is then returned to the HCA's. Desirably, for each HCA, the rate of withdrawing the portion of the catalyst for regeneration is from about 0.1% to about 99% of the rate of the catalyst exiting the reactor. More desirably, the rate is from about 0.2% to about 50%, and, most desirably, from about 0.5% to about 5%. [0026]
  • Optionally, the at least partially deactivated catalyst from the plurality of HCA's is directed to one or more stripping units wherein the at least partially deactivated catalyst contacts one or more stripping mediums under conditions effective to recover adsorbed hydrocarbons from the at least partially deactivated catalyst. [0027]
  • As indicated above, the present invention is directed to combining a plurality of HCA's with an integrated regeneration system. The plurality of HCA's could be selected from conventional HCA's and/or multiple riser HCA's disclosed in more detail below with reference to FIGS. 1 through 5. The number of HCA's in fluid communication with the integrated regeneration system depends on a variety of factors. For example, if a specific form of HCA is particularly effective in a specific hydrocarbon conversion process, a plurality of those reactors optionally is coupled to a single regeneration system. In this manner, the amount of desired product produced can be increased because more than one HCA is in use. Additionally, the cost of the overall hydrocarbon conversion process can be reduced because the number of regeneration systems is reduced. The invention also provides for a reduction in number of regeneration systems for a reactor system having reactors that produce different products from one another, but which use the same or very similar catalysts. [0028]
  • In one embodiment, the invention provides a reactor system including a plurality of HCA's and a regenerator for converting an at least partially deactivated catalyst to a regenerated catalyst. The reactor system also includes a first conduit system for transferring the at least partially deactivated catalyst from the reactor units to the regenerator, and a second conduit system for transferring the regenerated catalyst from the regenerator to the plurality of reactor units. The first conduit system optionally includes a first stripping unit for stripping the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a first stripping medium. Also, the first conduit system optionally includes a second stripping unit for stripping the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a second stripping medium. The second stripping medium can be the same as or different from the first stripping medium. Ideally, the first and second stripping units strip at least partially deactivated catalysts from separate reactor units. One or more of the reactors preferably is a multiple-riser reactor. [0029]
  • In another embodiment, the invention provides a reactor system comprising a first reaction unit comprising a first plurality of riser reactors, and a second reaction unit comprising a second plurality of riser reactors, wherein each of the first and second reaction units has a first end into which a catalyst can be fed and a second end through which the catalyst can exit the reaction unit. The reactor system also includes a regeneration unit having a regeneration inlet and a regeneration outlet, and a regeneration line having a plurality of first line ends in fluid communication with the second ends of the first and second reaction units and a second line end extending to the regeneration inlet. A return line is also provided having a first return end in fluid communication with the regeneration outlet, a second return end directing a first portion of the catalyst to the first reaction unit, and a third return end directing a second portion of the catalyst to the second reaction unit. [0030]
  • Desirably, a portion of the catalyst, comprising molecular sieve and any other materials such as binders, fillers, etc., is removed from each HCA, e.g., reactor or reaction unit, for regeneration and recirculation back to the HCA at a rate of from about 0.1 times to about 10 times, more desirably from about 0.2 to about 5 times, and most desirably from about 0.3 to about 3 times the total feed rate of oxygenates to the HCA. These rates pertain to the catalyst containing molecular sieve only, and do not include non-reactive solids. The rate of total solids, i.e., catalyst and non-reactive solids, removed from the HCA for regeneration and recirculation back to the HCA will vary these rates in direct proportion to the content of non-reactive solids in the total solids. [0031]
  • Desirably, the catalyst regeneration is carried out in one or more regenerating units or regenerators in the presence of a gas comprising oxygen or other oxidants. Examples of other oxidants include, but are not necessarily limited to, singlet O[0032] 2, O3, SO3, N2O, NO, NO2, N2O5, and mixtures thereof. Air and air diluted with nitrogen or CO2 are desired regeneration gases. The oxygen concentration in air can be reduced to a controlled level to minimize overheating of, or creating hot spots in, the regenerator. The catalyst can also be regenerated reductively with hydrogen, mixtures of hydrogen and carbon monoxide, or other suitable reducing gases.
  • The catalyst can be regenerated in any number of methods—batch, continuous, semi-continuous, or a combination thereof. Continuous catalyst regeneration is a desired method. Desirably, the catalyst is regenerated to a level of remaining coke from about 0.01 wt % to about 15 wt %, more preferably from about 0.01 to about 5 wt %, of the weight of the catalyst. [0033]
  • The catalyst regeneration temperature should be from about 250° C. to about 750° C., and desirably from about 500° C. to about 700° C. Because the regeneration reaction preferably takes place at a temperature considerably higher, e.g., about 93° C. to about 150° C. higher, than the oxygenate conversion reaction, it is desirable to cool at least a portion of the regenerated catalyst to a lower temperature before it is sent back to the reactor. One or more catalyst coolers located externally to the regeneration apparatuses can be used to remove some heat from the catalyst after it has been withdrawn from the regeneration apparatuses. When the regenerated catalyst is cooled, it is desirable to cool it to a temperature which is from about 65° C. higher to about the temperature of the catalyst withdrawn from the reactor. This cooled catalyst is then returned to either some portion of the reactor, the regeneration apparatus, or both. When the regenerated catalyst from the regeneration apparatus is returned to the reactor, it can be returned to any portion of the reactor. For example, the catalyst can be returned to the catalyst containment area to await contact with the feed, the separation zone to contact products of the feed or a combination of both. [0034]
  • Desirably, catalyst regeneration is carried out after the at least partially deactivated catalyst has been stripped of most of the readily removable organic materials (organics), e.g., hydrocarbons, in a stripper or stripping chamber. This stripping can be achieved by passing a stripping medium, e.g., a stripping gas over the spent catalyst at an elevated temperature. Gases suitable for stripping include steam, nitrogen, helium, argon, methane, CO[0035] 2, CO, hydrogen, and mixtures thereof. A preferred gas is steam. Gas hourly space velocity (GHSV, based on volume of gas to volume of catalyst and coke) of the stripping gas is from about 0.1 h−1 to about 20,000 h−1. Acceptable temperatures of stripping are from about 250° C. to about 750° C., and desirably from about 400° C. to about 600° C.
  • An alternative embodiment of the invention is a method for forming olefins in a methanol to olefin (MTO) reactor system. The method includes contacting in a first reaction unit a first oxygenate with a first catalyst under conditions effective to convert at least a portion of the first oxygenate to a first olefin and at least partially deactivating the first catalyst to form a deactivated first catalyst. The method also includes contacting in a second reaction unit a second oxygenate with a second catalyst under conditions effective to convert at least a portion of the second oxygenate to a second olefin and at least partially deactivating the second catalyst to form a deactivated second catalyst. The deactivated first catalyst and deactivated second catalyst are directed to a regeneration unit and are regenerated to form regenerated catalysts. A first portion of the regenerated catalysts is directed to the first reaction unit, and a second portion of the regenerated catalysts is directed to the second reaction unit. The deactivated first catalyst optionally contacts a first stripping medium in a first stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated first catalyst. Also, the deactivated second catalyst optionally contacts a second stripping medium in a second stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated second catalyst. Alternatively, the deactivated second catalyst optionally contacts the first stripping medium in the first stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated second catalyst. [0036]
  • Another embodiment of the invention provides a hydrocarbon conversion system comprising first and second pluralities of riser reactors, each of the riser reactors having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed and a second end through which the catalyst can exit the riser reactor. The hydrocarbon conversion system includes first and second catalyst retention zones provided to contain catalyst which can be fed to the first and second plurality of riser reactors, respectively. Additionally, the system includes first and second separation zones into which the second ends of the first and second pluralities of riser reactors extend, respectively, the separation zones being provided to separate the catalyst from product(s) of a reaction or reactions conducted in the first and second pluralities of riser reactors. First and second catalyst returns are also provided in fluid communication between the first and second separation zones, respectively, and the first and second catalyst retention zones, respectively. The hydrocarbon conversion system also includes a regenerator for regenerating the catalyst, and first and second catalyst outlet lines, each of the outlet lines having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed from the first and second pluralities of riser reactors, respectively, and a second end through which the catalyst can enter the regenerator. The system also provides first and second catalyst return lines, each of the return lines having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed from the regenerator and a second end through which the catalyst can enter the first and second pluralities of riser reactors, respectively. [0037]
  • Yet another embodiment of the invention provides a catalyst regenerator system, comprising a regeneration zone for contacting an at least partially deactivated catalyst with a regeneration medium under conditions effective to form a regenerated catalyst, a plurality of catalyst inlets for receiving the at least partially deactivated catalyst from a plurality of reactor units, and a plurality of catalyst outlets for delivering the regenerated catalyst to the plurality of reactor units. A stripping zone or zones optionally is provided for contacting the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a stripping medium under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated catalyst. [0038]
  • In one embodiment, the invention is a method for regenerating catalyst comprising receiving an at least partially deactivated catalyst from a plurality of multiple riser reaction units, heating the catalyst under conditions effective to convert the at least partially deactivated catalyst to a regenerated catalyst, and directing the regenerated catalyst to the plurality of multiple riser reaction units. [0039]
  • Another embodiment of the invention provides a hydrocarbon conversion system comprising a plurality of reaction units, each unit comprising a plurality of riser reactors, and at least one regeneration unit coupled to the reaction units. The number of reaction units is greater than the number of regeneration units. Optionally, this embodiment also provides at least one stripping unit coupled to the reaction units, wherein the number of reaction units is greater than the number of stripping units. Optionally, this embodiment also provides at least one catalyst cooler coupled to the reaction units, wherein the number of reaction units is greater than the number of catalyst coolers. [0040]
  • In another embodiment of the present invention, a plurality of HCA's for converting hydrocarbons to different products, e.g., one or more of the HCA's producing different products from the other HCA's, is coupled to a single regeneration system. This embodiment is particularly effective where the catalysts implemented in the various hydrocarbon conversion processes are the same or similar for the different hydrocarbon conversion processes. In one particularly preferred embodiment a plurality of the HCA's are MTO conversion apparatuses. Optionally, a first MTO conversion apparatus can be designed to provide a first ethylene-to-propylene product ratio. The first ratio may be different from a second ethylene-to-propylene ratio provided by a second MTO conversion apparatus. Thus, a first MTO conversion apparatus may produce mostly ethylene while a second MTO conversion apparatus may produce mostly propylene, although the two MTO conversion apparatuses share a common regeneration system. [0041]
  • As indicated above, the number of HCA's that are coupled to a single regeneration system varies. For example, the present invention provides for two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten or more HCA's in fluid communication with a lesser number of regeneration systems. Preferably, a plurality of HCA's are in fluid communication with a single regeneration system. [0042]
  • As used herein, “regeneration system” means one or more regeneration units, one or more stripping units, and/or one or more catalyst coolers for cooling the catalyst prior to recycling the regenerated catalyst to the HCA's. The “regeneration system” optionally includes various conduits or lines coupling these units, e.g., the HCA's, the stripper(s), the regeneration unit(s), and/or the catalyst cooler(s). [0043]
  • FIG. 6 illustrates one embodiment of an integrated regeneration system, generally designated [0044] 600, in accordance with one embodiment of the present invention. The integrated regeneration system 600 is coupled to a plurality of HCA's 602A, 602B. Although FIG. 6 only illustrates two HCA's in fluid communication with the integrated regeneration system 600, in other embodiments, the integrated regeneration system is also in fluid communication with additional HCA's, as discussed above. As shown, the HCA's 602A, 602B are substantially similar or identical in form. Alternatively, the HCA's are different from each other. As shown in FIG. 6, in one embodiment, each HCA 602A, 602B includes multiple riser reactors. The feedstock 630A, 630B is shown entering the bottom of each of the HCA's 602A, 602B. In the HCA's, the feedstock contacts catalyst under conditions effective to convert at least a portion of the feedstock to product. An HCA product effluent stream 634 is shown exiting the separation zones of each of the HCA's. The product effluent lines from each HCA are combined and then directed to a product recovery unit (not shown).
  • The process of the integrated regeneration system [0045] 600 will now be described in more detail. The separation zones of the HCA's preferably at least partially separate catalyst from the desired product. At least a portion of the catalyst is then withdrawn from each HCA. The withdrawn catalyst can include partially deactivated, fully deactivated and/or activated catalysts, e.g., containing substantially no carbonaceous deposits.
  • With continuing reference to FIG. 6, at least a portion of the catalyst from the HCA's [0046] 602A, 602B is withdrawn through conduits or lines 604A, 604B. The lines 604A, 604B optionally include one or more flow control devices 606A, 606B. Each flow control device 606A, 606B can be of any type of flow control device currently in use in the art to control catalyst flow through the catalyst transfer lines. Useful non-limiting examples of flow control devices include ball valves, plug valves and slide valves. Preferably, the present invention includes one or more strippers or stripping units 608A, 608B. As shown in FIG. 6, each HCA has its own respective stripping unit 608A, 608B.
  • In this embodiment, the catalyst from the plurality of HCA's [0047] 602A, 602B is directed to the stripping units 608A, 608B. In the stripping unit, the at least partially deactivated catalyst contacts a stripping medium, which enters the stripping units through lines 632A, 632B, under conditions effective to remove at least a portion of the organics, e.g., interstitial hydrocarbons, from the catalyst. The stripped catalyst then is withdrawn through lines 610A and 610B and optionally passes through one or more flow control devices 612A, 612B. Stripper offgas streams 636A, 636B, comprising the stripping medium, light hydrocarbons and desirable product, exit the top of the stripping units 608A, 608B and optionally are directed to and combined with product effluent stream 634. In an alternative embodiment (not shown), stripper offgas streams 636A, 636B are directed to the HCA's 602A, 602B, e.g., to the separation zones thereof, wherein entrained catalyst can be separated from the product in the offgas streams.
  • The stripped catalyst from lines [0048] 610A, 610B is then directed to a single regeneration unit 614. Optionally, lines 610A and 610B from stripping units 608A and 608B, respectively, can be combined into a single line (not shown) for transferring the combined catalyst stream from HCA's 602A and 602B into regeneration unit 614. Because the regeneration unit 614 receives catalyst from a plurality of HCA's, the size of the regeneration unit preferably is adapted to be larger than conventional regeneration units in order to accommodate the larger volume of catalyst being received therein. A regenerating medium, which preferably has been compressed, such as air is provided to the regeneration unit 614 through lines 628. The regenerating medium contacts the stripped catalyst in the regeneration unit under conditions effective to at least partially regenerate the stripped catalyst. Regenerator offgas line 638 removes byproducts of the regeneration process, e.g., N2, CO2, and CO, from the regeneration unit 614. After the catalyst has been regenerated, it is withdrawn from regeneration unit 614 via catalyst outlet line 616 and optionally passes through a flow control device 618. At dividing point 620, the regenerated catalyst stream is divided between a plurality of lines adapted to carry the regenerated catalyst to one or more catalyst coolers 640A, 640B (two are illustrated), wherein the regenerated catalyst contacts a cooling medium, e.g., water or steam, under conditions effective to cool the regenerated catalyst. In an alternative embodiment, not shown, the regeneration unit 614 can include a plurality of catalyst outlet lines 616, each of which is directed to a respective catalyst cooler. Each of the plurality of lines that directs the regenerated catalyst to the respective catalyst coolers 640A, 640B preferably includes a flow control device 624A, 624B. A first portion of the cooled catalyst from the catalyst coolers 640A, 640B is redirected through lines 642A, 642B back to the regeneration unit 614 for further regeneration. A second portion of the cooled catalyst is directed through lines 622A, 622B to catalyst inlets 626A, 626B of respective HCA's 602A, 602B. Preferably, each of lines 622A and 622B includes a flow control device 644A, 644B for controlling the flow of catalysts therein.
  • FIG. 7 illustrates another embodiment of the present invention wherein catalyst from a plurality of HCA's is directed to a single stripping unit [0049] 702 and a single catalyst cooler 716. Specifically, at least partially deactivated catalyst is withdrawn from the HCA's 602A and 602B via lines 704A and 704B. Each of these lines optionally includes a flow control device 706A, 706B. Lines 704A and 704B carry the at least partially deactivated catalyst from the HCA's to the single stripping unit 702. As shown in FIG. 7, the at least partially deactivated catalysts from the HCA's are directed separately from the HCA's to the stripping unit 702. However, in another embodiment (not illustrated), lines 704A and 704B are combined into a single feed line which introduces the combined catalyst stream from the HCA's into stripping unit 702. Once in the stripping unit 702, the catalyst contacts a stripping medium, which enters the stripping unit through line 712, under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons therefrom. Stripper offgas stream 714 comprising the stripping medium, light hydrocarbons and desirable product, exits the top of the stripping unit 702 and optionally is directed to and combined with product effluent stream 634. In an alternative embodiment (not shown), stripper offgas stream 714 is directed to the HCA's 602A, 602B, e.g., to the separation zones thereof, wherein entrained catalyst can be separated from the product in the offgas streams.
  • With further reference to FIG. 7, after the catalyst has been stripped in unit [0050] 702, it is withdrawn from stripping unit 702 via line 708 and optionally passes through a flow control device 710 in route to the regeneration unit 614. In the regeneration unit, the stripped catalyst contacts a regenerating medium, which has been introduced into the regeneration unit 614 through lines 628, under conditions effective to regenerate at least a portion of the catalysts. After regeneration in regeneration unit 614, the regenerated catalyst is withdrawn through line 616, passes through a flow control device 618, and is directed to a catalyst cooler 716. In the catalyst cooler, the catalyst contacts a cooling medium under conditions effective to cool the catalyst. A first portion of the cooled catalyst is redirected through line 718 back to the regeneration unit 614 for further regeneration. Second and third portions of the cooled catalyst are directed, respectively, through lines 622A and 622B, flow control devices 624A and 624B, and back to the HCA's 602A, 602B via inlets 626A, 626B.
  • The embodiment disclosed in FIG. 7 provides the additional cost saving advantage of stripping catalyst from a plurality of HCA's in a single stripping unit. Thus, as with regeneration unit [0051] 614, the size of stripping unit 702 optionally is larger than a conventional stripping unit associated with a single reactor system in order to accommodate the increased volume of catalyst received therein. The embodiment disclosed in FIG. 7 also provides the cost saving advantage of cooling catalyst from a regeneration unit a single catalyst cooler. Thus, as with regeneration unit 614, the size of catalyst cooler 716 optionally is larger than a conventional catalyst cooler associated with a single reactor system in order to accommodate the increased volume of catalyst received therein. In another embodiment, a plurality of catalyst coolers is implemented in accordance with the present invention for cooling each respective stream of regenerated catalysts prior to its introduction to each respective HCA.
  • As shown in FIGS. 6 and 7, the catalyst is withdrawn from regeneration unit [0052] 614 via a single line 616. However, in an alternative embodiment (not shown), the regenerated catalyst is withdrawn from the regeneration unit via a plurality of lines, each of which carries the regenerated catalyst to a respective catalyst cooler and/or HCA. Nevertheless, withdrawing regenerated catalysts from a single line is preferred in accordance with the present invention so that a single catalyst cooler can cool the regenerated catalyst prior to its reintroduction into the plurality of HCA's, as shown in FIG. 7.
  • Additionally, although the present invention has generally been described as directing catalyst from a plurality of HCA's to a single stripping unit and/or a single regeneration unit and/or a single catalyst cooler, benefits can also be realized from directing catalyst from a plurality of HCA's to a plurality of stripping units, regeneration units and/or catalyst coolers. For example, in an alternative embodiment of the present invention, catalysts from a plurality of HCA's are directed to at least one regeneration unit coupled thereto, wherein the number of HCA's, e.g., reaction units, is greater than the number of regeneration units. Similarly, catalyst from a plurality of HCA's is directed to at least one stripping unit, wherein the number of HCA's is greater than the number of stripping units. Additionally or alternatively, regenerated catalysts is directed to at least one catalyst cooler wherein the number of HCA's is greater than the number of catalyst coolers. [0053]
  • The process for converting a feedstock, especially a feedstock containing one or more oxygenates, in the presence of a molecular sieve catalyst composition of the invention, is carried out by a reaction process in a plurality of HCA's where the processes are preferably selected from the following types of processes: a fixed bed process, a fluidized bed process (including a turbulent bed process), preferably a continuous fluidized bed process, and most preferably a continuous high velocity fluidized bed process. In accordance with the present invention, one or more reaction processes, that is, the same or different processes, occurs in a plurality of HCA's. [0054]
  • The types of individual HCA's that can be implemented in the present invention will now be described in more detail. The reaction processes can take place in a variety of catalytic reactors such as hybrid reactors that have dense bed or fixed bed reaction zones and/or fast fluidized bed reaction zones coupled together, circulating fluidized bed reactors, riser reactors, and the like. Suitable conventional reactor types are described in for example U.S. Pat. No. 4,076,796, U.S. Pat. No. 6,287,522 (dual riser), and Fluidization Engineering, D. Kunii and [0055] 0. Levenspiel, Robert E. Krieger Publishing Company, New York, N.Y. 1977, which are all herein fully incorporated by reference.
  • The preferred reactor type is selected from the riser reactors generally described in Riser Reactor, Fluidization and Fluid-Particle Systems, pages 48 to 59, F. A. Zenz and D. F. Othmer, Reinhold Publishing Corporation, New York, 1960, and U.S. Pat. No. 6,166,282 (fast-fluidized bed reactor), which are incorporated herein by reference. Most preferably, at least one HCA includes a plurality of riser reactors, as disclosed in U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/564,613 filed May 4, 2000 to Lattner et al., the entirety of which is incorporated herein by reference, and as discussed in more detail below. Optionally, each of the HCA's includes a plurality of riser reactors, as shown in FIGS. 6 and 7. [0056]
  • In the preferred embodiment, a fluidized bed process or high velocity fluidized bed process includes a reactor system, a regeneration system and a recovery system. The reactor system preferably includes a plurality of fluid bed reactor systems, each having a first reaction zone within one or more riser reactor(s) and a second reaction zone within at least one disengaging vessel, preferably comprising one or more cyclones. In one embodiment, the one or more riser reactor(s) and a disengaging vessel is contained within a single HCA. Fresh feedstock, preferably containing one or more oxygenates, optionally with one or more diluent(s), is fed to the one or more riser reactor(s) in a given HCA in which a zeolitic or non-zeolitic molecular sieve catalyst composition or coked version thereof is introduced. In one embodiment, the molecular sieve catalyst composition or coked version thereof is contacted with a liquid or gas, or combination thereof, prior to being introduced to the riser reactor(s), preferably the liquid is water or methanol, and the gas is an inert gas such as nitrogen. [0057]
  • In one embodiment, the amount of liquid feedstock fed separately or jointly with a vapor feedstock, to a reactor system is in the range of from 0.1 weight percent to about 95 weight percent, preferably from about 10 weight percent to about 90 weight percent, more preferably from about 50 weight percent to about 85 weight percent based on the total weight of the feedstock including oxygenate recycle and any diluent contained therein. The liquid and vapor feedstocks are preferably the same composition, or contain varying proportions of the same or different feedstock with the same or different diluent. [0058]
  • The feedstock entering an individual reactor system is preferably converted, partially or fully, in the first reactor zone into a gaseous effluent that enters the disengaging vessel along with a coked molecular sieve catalyst composition which is at least partially deactivated. In the preferred embodiment, cyclone(s) within the disengaging vessel are designed to separate the molecular sieve catalyst composition, preferably a coked molecular sieve catalyst composition, from the gaseous effluent containing one or more olefin(s) within the disengaging zone. Cyclones are preferred, however, gravity effects within the disengaging vessel will also separate the catalyst compositions from the gaseous effluent. Other methods for separating the catalyst compositions from the gaseous effluent include the use of plates, caps, elbows, and the like. [0059]
  • In one embodiment of a disengaging system in an individual HCA, the disengaging system includes a disengaging vessel. In one embodiment, a lower portion of the disengaging vessel is a stripping zone. In the stripping zone the at least partially coked molecular sieve catalyst composition is contacted with a stripping medium which is a gas, preferably one or a combination of steam, methane, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, hydrogen, or an inert gas such as argon, preferably steam, to recover adsorbed interstitial hydrocarbons from the at least partially coked molecular sieve catalyst composition that is then introduced to the regeneration system. Ideally, from about 2 to about 10, more preferably about 2 to about 6, and most preferably 3 to about 5 pounds of stripping medium, e.g., steam, is provided to the stripping unit for every 1000 pounds of catalyst. In another embodiment, the stripping zone is in a separate vessel from the disengaging vessel and the stripping medium is passed at a gas hourly superficial velocity (GHSV) of from 1 hr[0060] −1 to about 20,000 hr−1 based on the volume of gas to volume of coked molecular sieve catalyst composition, preferably at an elevated temperature from 250° C. to about 750° C., preferably from about 350° C. to 650° C., over the coked molecular sieve catalyst composition.
  • In one embodiment, catalyst from more than one disengaging system, e.g., from more than one HCA, is directed to an integrated stripping zone. [0061]
  • In one preferred embodiment of the process for converting an oxygenate to olefin(s) using a silicoaluminophosphate molecular sieve catalyst composition, the process is operated at a WHSV of at least 20 hr[0062] −1 and a Temperature Corrected Normalized Methane Selectivity (TCNMS) of less than 0.016, preferably less than or equal to 0.01. See, for example, U.S. Pat. No. 5,952,538, which is herein fully incorporated by reference.
  • FIG. 1 presents a partial cross sectional view of a HCA [0063] 10 that optionally is implemented with the integrated regeneration system in accordance with the present invention. The apparatus 10 comprises a shell 12, a plurality of riser reactors 20, a feed distributor 30, and a catalyst return 50. Preferably, the present invention couples a plurality of HCA's to an integrated regeneration system.
  • With continuing reference to FIG. 1, the shell [0064] 12 forms a separation zone 14 in which a product of the hydrocarbon conversion reaction is separated from the catalyst which catalyzes the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. Shell 12 includes a first end 16 and a second end 18. The separation zone 14 may additionally contain one or more separation devices, not shown, which are used to separate the products from the catalyst. Useful separation devices are discussed below in association with the discussion of other embodiments of the present invention. Further, the separation devices may be positioned externally to the separation zone 14, i.e., outside of the shell 12 of the HCA 10, or a combination of externally and internally positioned separation devices.
  • Optionally, the riser reactors [0065] 20 in one or more of the HCA's may extend into shell 12 and into the separation zone 14. By extending the riser reactors 20 into shell 12 and the separation zone 14, the height required to obtain the desired aspect ratio of a given riser reactor 20 is concurrent with at least a portion of the height required for the shell 12, separation zone 14, and other associated spaces, reducing the total height of the hydrocarbon conversion reactor 10 of the present invention. Each riser reactor 20 includes a first end 22 into which the catalyst and feed are fed to conduct the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. Each riser reactor 20 further includes a second end 24 through which the catalyst, products and unreacted feed, if any, exit the riser reactor 20. The first end 22 of each riser reactor 20 terminates in a mouth 26 through which the catalyst and feed are fed into the riser reactor 20. The number of riser reactors 20 employed in each HCA 10 varies depending on the hydrocarbon conversion process or processes to be conducted in the plurality of apparatuses 10. Each apparatus 10 can contain two, three, four, five, six or even more than six riser reactors 20.
  • In another embodiment (not shown), one or more of the HCA's include a transport conduit for consolidating and directing the output of multiple reactors to the separation zone, as disclosed in U.S. patent application Ser. No. 09/564,613 to Lattner et al. (multiple riser reactor), the entirety of which is incorporated herein by reference. [0066]
  • The size of the riser reactors [0067] 20 depends on parameters such as the superficial gas velocity, solids hydrodynamics, pressure, and production capacity of the desired hydrocarbon conversion process. In the present invention, each riser reactor 20 desirably has a height from 10 meters to 70 meters and a width (or diameter) of one meter to three meters. All of the riser reactors 20 in a given HCA have a similar height from their first ends 22 to their second ends 24. Desirably, the heights of the riser reactors 20 vary by no more than 20% from one riser reactor 20 to another riser reactor 20 in an individual HCA. More desirably, the heights vary by no more than 10% and, most desirably, the heights vary by no more than 1%.
  • In the present invention, each of the riser reactors [0068] 20 in an individual HCA has a similar cross sectional area along its entire height. Desirably, each of the riser reactors 20 has a cross sectional area of no greater than 12 m2. More desirably, each of the riser reactors 20 has a cross sectional area of no greater than 7 m2. Most desirably, each of the riser reactors 20 has a cross sectional area of no greater than 3.5 m2. Desirably, the cross sectional areas of the riser reactors 20 vary by no more than 20% from one riser reactor 20 to another riser reactor 20. More desirably, the cross sectional areas of the riser reactors 20 vary by no more than 10% and, most desirably, the cross sectional areas of the riser reactors 20 vary by no more than 1%. If one or more riser reactors 20 have both a largest and a smallest cross-sectional area at different points along the height of riser reactors 20, desirably the largest cross-sectional areas of the riser reactors 20 vary by no more than 20% from one riser reactor 20 to another riser reactor 20, and the smallest cross-sectional areas of the riser reactors 20 vary by no more than 20% from one riser reactor 20 to another riser reactor 20. More desirably, the largest cross sectional area of one riser reactor 20 varies by no more than 10% from the largest cross sectional area of another riser reactor 20 and the smallest cross sectional area varies by no more than 10% from the smallest cross sectional area of another riser reactor 20. Most desirably, the largest cross sectional area of one riser reactor 20 varies by no more than 1% from the largest cross sectional area of another riser reactor 20 and the smallest cross sectional area varies by no more than 1% from the smallest cross sectional area of another riser reactor 20.
  • Desirably, the cross sectional area of each riser reactor [0069] 20 in an individual HCA varies by no more than 50% along its entire length. More desirably, the cross sectional area of each riser reactor 20 in an HCA varies by no more than 30% along its entire height and, most desirably, the cross sectional area of each riser reactor 20 varies by no more than 10% along its entire height.
  • To provide a feed to the riser reactors [0070] 20 of an HCA, at least one feed distributor 30 is positioned near the first ends 22 of the riser reactors 20. More than one feed distributor 30 may be employed adjacent the first ends 22 of the riser reactors 20 to provide feed in various states, e.g., one feed distributor 30 may provide feed in a vapor form while a second feed distributor 30 may provide feed in a liquid form. Feed distributor 30 includes a body 32 from which a plurality of necks 34 extend. Each riser reactor 20 has at least one associated neck 34. Each neck 34 terminates in a head 36. Each head 36 of each neck 34 is positioned adjacent to the first end 22 of each riser reactor 20. Desirably, each head 36 extends upwardly into each riser reactor 20. More desirably, each head 36 is positioned at or above the mouth 26 at the first end 22 of each riser reactor 20. Feed distributor 30 may include an optional flow control device, not shown, positioned on feed distributor 30 to control the amount of feed to each neck 34 or a flow control device may be positioned on each neck 34. The flow control device can also be employed to measure flow as well as control it. Further, a nozzle, not shown, may be positioned on each head 36 to further control the distribution of the feed to each riser reactor 20. Additionally, each head 36 may be fitted with screening device, not shown, to prevent back flow of catalyst into any of necks 34 of feed distributor 30 and, subsequently, into body 32 of feed distributor 30.
  • At least one catalyst return [0071] 50 provides fluid communication between the separation zone of 14 of shell 12 and the riser reactors 20. Particularly, each catalyst return 50 provides fluid communication between the separation zone 14 and the first ends 22 of each riser reactor 20. Each catalyst return 50 has a first end 52 and a second end 54. The first end 52 of the catalyst return 50 opens into the second end 18 of shell 12 and the second end 54 of catalyst return 50 opens adjacent the riser reactors 20. Each catalyst return 50 is provided to transport catalyst from the separation zone 14 of shell 12 to the first ends 22 of the riser reactors 20. One or more of the HCA's may include one, two, three, four, five, six or more catalyst returns 50. Typically, although not necessarily, the number of catalyst returns 50 in an HCA corresponds to the number of riser reactors 20 in an individual HCA. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 1, the catalyst returns 50 are external to the riser reactors 20. However, as shown in subsequently described embodiments, the catalyst return 50 may be contained within a common shell or be positioned internally in relation to the riser reactors 20 or some combination thereof. Flow of catalyst through the catalyst return(s) 50 may optionally be controlled through the use of a flow control device 56 positioned on each catalyst return 50. The flow control device 56 can be any type of flow control device currently in use in the art to control catalyst flow through catalyst transfer lines. If employed, the flow control device 56 is desirably a ball valve, a plug valve or a slide valve.
  • The HCA [0072] 10 further includes a base 60. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 1, the base 60, the catalyst returns 50 and the first ends 22 of the riser reactors 20 define a catalyst retention zone 62. The catalyst retention zone 62 is provided to retain catalyst which is used to catalyze the hydrocarbon conversion reaction which is conducted in the apparatus 10. The catalyst return 50 provides fluid communication between the separation zone 14 and the catalyst retention zone 62. To do so, the second ends 54 of the catalyst returns 50 open to the catalyst retention zone 62. As one of skill in the art will appreciate, the boundary between the catalyst retention zone 62 and the catalyst return 50 is fluid and depends, at least in part, on the level of catalyst contained in the catalyst return 50 and the catalyst retention zone 62.
  • A fluid distributor [0073] 70 is also positioned in or near the base 60 of the apparatus 10. The fluid distributor 70 includes a conduit 72 into which a fluidizing fluid is fed into catalyst retention zone 62 to fluidize a fluidizable catalyst in the catalyst retention zone 62 and the catalyst returns 50. Additional fluid distributors 70, as shown in FIG. 1, may also be positioned on each catalyst return 50 to fluidize a fluidizable catalyst contained in each of the catalyst returns 50.
  • One or more of the HCA's may also include an outlet [0074] 80 through which the catalyst can be removed from the apparatus 10. The outlet 80 is shown as being positioned on the second end 18 of the shell 12 but may be positioned at any position on the apparatus 10. The apparatus 10 may also include an inlet 82 through which the catalyst may be placed into the apparatus 10. Although the inlet 82 is shown as being positioned on the first end 16 of the shell 12, the inlet 82 may be positioned at any position on the apparatus 10. A line 84 may be provided to remove hydrocarbon conversion products from the apparatus 10.
  • As shown in FIG. 1, the present invention preferably includes an associated catalyst regeneration apparatus [0075] 90. The catalyst regeneration apparatus 90 is in fluid communication with the HCA 10. The catalyst regeneration apparatus 90 includes a catalyst regenerator 92, which is in fluid communication with the HCA 10, and, optionally catalyst stripper 94, which is in fluid communication with the catalyst regenerator 92 and which may be in fluid communication with one or more of the HCA's. A first line 96 provides fluid communication between the outlet 80 on shell 12 and the catalyst stripper 94. A second line 98 provides fluid communication between the catalyst stripper 94 and the catalyst regenerator 92. A third line 100 provides fluid communication between the catalyst regenerator 92 and the inlet 82 on shell 12. A flow control device 102 may optionally be positioned on first line 96 to control the flow of catalyst between the shell 12 and the catalyst stripper 94. A flow control device 104 may optionally be positioned on second line 98 to control the flow of catalyst between the catalyst stripper 94 and the catalyst regenerator 92. Although the catalyst stripper 94 is shown on FIG. 1 as being separate from the catalyst regenerator 92, one skilled in the art will appreciate that the catalyst stripper 94 may be integrally formed with the catalyst regenerator 92. One skilled in the art will also appreciate that, although FIG. 1 shows third line 100 as returning the catalyst to the separation zone 14 through line 82, the catalyst may also be returned to the catalyst return 50, the catalyst retention zone 62 and combinations of the separation zone 14, the catalyst return 50 and the catalyst retention zone 62.
  • When in operation, one or more of the HCA's, as shown in FIG. 1, function in the following manner. The apparatus [0076] 10 is filled with an appropriate amount of a catalyst suitable to carry out the desired hydrocarbon conversion reaction. The catalyst should be of a type which is fluidizable. At least a portion of the catalyst is contained in the catalyst retention zone 62. To fluidize the catalyst in the catalyst retention zone 62, a fluidizing fluid is fed into the fluid distributor(s) 70 through inlet 72. The fluidizing fluid is fed into the catalyst retention zone 62 and the catalyst return(s) 50 of the HCA 10. Useful fluidizing fluids include, but are not limited to, inert gasses, nitrogen, steam, carbon dioxide, and hydrocarbons. The choice of fluidizing fluid depends upon the type of conversion reaction being conducted in the HCA 10. Desirably, the fluidizing fluid is unreactive (i.e. inert) in the reaction being conducted in the HCA 10. In other words, it is desirable that the fluidizing fluid does not play a part in the hydrocarbon conversion process being conducted in the HCA 10 other than to fluidize the fluidizable catalyst.
  • Once the catalyst has reached an acceptable fluidized state, a feed is fed into the HCA [0077] 10 through feed distributor 30. The feed enters the body 32 of feed distributor 30, passes through the necks 34 of feed distributor 30 and exits through the heads 36 of feed distributor 30. The feed is distributed to each of the riser reactors 20 through their first ends 22. Desirably, the feed is provided in substantially equal streams to each riser reactor 20. By “substantially equal” it is meant that the flow of feed provided to each riser reactor 20 through the feed distributor 30 varies by no more than 25% by volume rate, and varies no more than 25% by mass percent for each component in the feed, from one riser reactor 20 to another riser reactor 20. More desirably, the flow of feed provided to each riser reactor 20 through the feed distributor 30 varies by no more than 10% by volume rate, and varies no more than 10% by mass percent for each component in the feed, from one riser reactor 20 to another riser reactor 20. Most desirably, feed provided to each riser reactor 20 through the feed distributor 30 varies by no more than 1% by volume rate, and varies no more than 1% by mass percent for each component in the feed, from one riser reactor 20 to another riser reactor 20.
  • A pressure differential created by the velocity of the feed entering the first ends [0078] 22 of the riser reactors 20 and the pressure of the height of fluidizable catalyst in the catalyst return(s) 50 and the catalyst retention zone 62 causes catalyst to be aspirated into the first ends 22 of the riser reactors 20. The catalyst is transported through the riser reactors 20 under well known principles of eduction in which the kinetic energy of one fluid, in this case the feed, is used to move another fluid, in this case the fluidized catalyst. The catalyst and feed travel from the first ends 22 to the second ends 24 of the riser reactors 20. As the catalyst and feed travel through the riser reactors 20, the hydrocarbon conversion reaction occurs and a conversion product is produced.
  • By designing one or more HCA's with these features, each individual riser reactor [0079] 20 in a given HCA operates in a substantially identical manner. With this invention, it is desirable to maintain both the reactant feed rates and the catalyst feed rates at the same rates to each of the riser reactors 20. In this way, the conversion of the feed and selectivity to the desired products will be substantially identical and can run at optimum operational conditions.
  • The conversion product(s), unreacted feed, if any, and the catalyst exit the riser reactors [0080] 20 through their second ends 24 and enter into the separation zone 14 of shell 12. In second end 16 of shell 12, the conversion product and unreacted feed, if any, are separated from the catalyst by a separator, not shown, such as cyclonic separators, filters, screens, impingement devices, plates, cones, other devices which would separate the catalyst from the product of the conversion reaction, and combinations thereof. Desirably, the conversion product and unreacted feed, if any, are separated by a series of cyclonic separators. Once the catalyst has been separated from the conversion product and the unreacted feed, if any, the conversion products and unreacted feed, if any, are removed from the shell 12 through the line 84 for further processing such as separation and purification. The catalyst, after being separated from the products and unreacted feed, moves from the shell 12 to the catalyst retention zone 62. The catalyst exits shell 12 through the first ends 52 of the catalyst returns 50 and moves through the catalyst returns 50 to the first ends 54 of the catalyst returns 50 from which the catalyst moves to the catalyst retention zone 62. If desired, the flow of catalyst through the catalyst returns 50 can be controlled by the flow control devices 56. If the flow control devices 56 are employed, a height of fluidizable catalyst is maintained above each flow control device 56 in the catalyst return 50 to allow proper function of the flow control device 56.
  • In accordance with the present invention, at least a portion of the catalyst from a plurality of HCA's is circulated to a catalyst regeneration apparatus [0081] 90, as shown in FIG. 1. Catalyst to be regenerated is removed from the shell 12 though the outlet 80 and transported, if desired, to the catalyst stripper 94 through the first line 96. Optionally, the catalyst stripper 94 may include a second input line (not shown) from a second HCA (not shown). In this manner, catalyst from the second HCA can be transported by the second input line to the catalyst stripper 94. The flow of catalyst from the HCA 10 to the catalyst stripper 94 can be controlled by the flow control device 102. In the catalyst stripper 94, the catalyst is stripped of most of readily removable organic materials (organics), e.g., hydrocarbons. Stripping procedures and conditions for individual hydrocarbon conversion processes are within the skill of a person of skill in the art. The stripped catalyst is transferred from the catalyst stripper 94 to the catalyst regenerator or regeneration unit 92 through the second line 98. The flow of catalyst through the second line 98 may optionally be controlled by the optional flow control device 104. In the catalyst regenerator 92, carbonaceous deposits (coke) formed on the catalyst during a hydrocarbon conversion reaction are at least partially removed from the catalyst.
  • The catalyst regenerator [0082] 92 preferably receives catalyst from a plurality of HCA's as illustrated in FIG. 6, and as discussed in more detail below. As shown in FIG. 1, the catalyst regenerator 92 optionally may receive catalyst via second line 98 and via line 101, which is connected to a second HCA (not shown). Optionally, line 101 may be directed to a second stripping unit (not shown) which is in fluid communication with the second HCA. In this embodiment, catalyst may be delivered to the catalyst regenerator 92 from the second HCA through line 101. Similarly, catalyst from more than two HCA's may be directed to the catalyst stripper 94. Additionally or alternatively, catalyst from more than two HCA's may be directed to the catalyst regenerator 92.
  • The regenerated catalyst is then transferred to the shell [0083] 12 of the HCA 10 through outlet line 111 and third line 100. Regenerated catalyst may also be directed to other hydrocarbon apparatuses coupled to the regeneration system. A transport gas is typically provided to the outlet line 111, the third line 100, and line 105 to facilitate transfer of the catalyst from the catalyst regenerator 92 to the HCA 10 and the second HCA (not shown) and any additional HCA's (HCA's). As shown in FIG. 1, the catalyst is returned to the shell 12 through the inlet 82.
  • The catalyst regenerator [0084] 92 in accordance with the present invention also provides a conduit system for returning at least partially regenerated catalyst to the second hydrocarbon conversion reactor (not shown). This objective may be realized as shown in FIG. 1 whereby regenerated catalyst exits the catalyst regenerator in line outlet line 111 and is divided between two lines, third line 100 and line 105, at dividing point 109. The flow of catalyst through the outlet line 111, the third line 100, and line 105 may optionally be controlled by flow control devices 106, 103 and 107, respectively. The flow control devices 102, 103, 104, 106, and 107 can be any types of flow control devices currently in use in the art to control catalyst flow through catalyst transfer lines. Useful non-limiting flow control devices include ball valves, plug valves and slide valves.
  • One or more of the HCA's may be adapted as shown in FIG. 2. In this alternative embodiment, HCA [0085] 110, shown in partial cross section, comprises a shell 120, a plurality of riser reactors 130, a feed distributor 140, and a catalyst return 150.
  • With continuing reference to FIG. 2, the shell [0086] 120 forms a separation zone 122 in which a product of the hydrocarbon conversion reaction is separated from the catalyst which catalyzes the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. Shell 120 includes a first end 124 and a second end 126. Shell 120 defines a quiescent zone 128 from which catalyst can be withdrawn from the HCA 110.
  • Riser reactors [0087] 130 in a given HCA extend into shell 120 and the separation zone 122. Each riser reactor 130 includes a first end 132 into which the catalyst and feed are fed to conduct the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. Each riser reactor 130 further includes a second end 134 through which the catalyst, products and unreacted feed, if any, exit the riser reactor 130. The first end 132 of each riser reactor 130 terminates in a mouth 136 through which the catalyst and feed are fed into the riser reactor 130. As described above, the number of riser reactors 130 employed in the HCA 110 varies depending on the hydrocarbon conversion process to be conducted in the apparatus 110. The number and size of the riser reactors 130 is discussed above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 1.
  • To provide a feed to the riser reactors [0088] 130, at least one feed distributor 140 is positioned near the first ends 132 of the riser reactors 130. More than one feed distributor 140 may be employed to provide feed in various states, e.g., one feed distributor 140 may provide feed in a vapor form while a second feed distributor 140 may provide feed in a liquid form. Feed distributor 140 includes a body 142 from which a plurality of necks 144 extend. Each riser reactor 130 has at least one associated neck 144. Each head 146 of each neck 144 is positioned adjacent to the first end 132 of each riser reactor 130. Desirably, each head 146 extends upwardly into each riser reactor 130. More desirably, each head 146 is positioned at or above the mouth 136 at the first end 132 of each riser reactor 130. Feed distributor 140 may include an optional flow control device, not shown, positioned on feed distributor 140 to provide an equal amount of feed to each neck 144 or a flow control device may be positioned on each neck 144. The flow control device may also be employed to measure flow as well as control. Further, a nozzle, not shown, may be positioned on each head 146 to further control the distribution of the feed to each riser reactor 130. Additionally, each head 146 may be fitted with a screening device, not shown, to prevent back flow of catalyst into any of necks 144 of feed distributor 140 and, subsequently, into body 142 of feed distributor 140.
  • At least one catalyst return [0089] 150 provides fluid communication between the separation zone 122 of shell 120 and the riser reactors 130. Each catalyst return 150 has a first end 152 and a second end 154. The first end 152 of the catalyst return 150 opens adjacent the second end 126 of shell 120 and the second end 154 of catalyst return 150 opens to the riser reactors 130. Each catalyst return 150 is provided to transport catalyst from the separation zone 122 of shell 120 to the first ends 132 of the riser reactors 130. The apparatus 110 may include one, two, three, four, five, six or more catalyst returns 150. Typically, although not necessarily, the number of catalyst returns 150 corresponds to the number of riser reactors 130. Flow of catalyst through the catalyst return(s) 150 may optionally be controlled through the use of flow control devices, not shown, positioned on each catalyst return 150. The flow control devices can be any type of flow control devices currently in use in the art to control catalyst flow through catalyst transfer lines. If employed, the flow control device is desirably a ball valve, a plug valve or a slide valve.
  • The apparatus [0090] 110 further includes a base 160. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 2, the base 160, the catalyst returns 150 and the first ends 132 of the riser reactors 130 define a catalyst retention zone 162. The second ends 154 of the catalyst returns 150 open to the catalyst retention zone 162. The catalyst retention zone 162 is provided to retain catalyst which is used to catalyze the hydrocarbon conversion reaction which is conducted in the apparatus 110. As one of skill in the art will appreciate, the boundary between the catalyst retention zone 162 and the catalyst return 150 is fluid and depends, at least in part, on the level of catalyst contained in the catalyst retention zone 162 and the catalyst return 150.
  • A fluid distributor [0091] 170 is also positioned in or near the base 160 of the apparatus 110. The fluid distributor 170 includes a conduit 172 into which a fluidizing fluid is fed into catalyst retention zone 162 to fluidize a fluidizable catalyst contained in the catalyst retention zone 162 and the catalyst returns 150. Additional fluid distributors 170, as shown in FIG. 2, may also be positioned on the catalyst return(s) 150 to provide additional fluidizing fluid in the catalyst return(s) 150.
  • The HCA [0092] 110 may also include an outlet 180 through which the catalyst can be removed from the apparatus 110. The outlet 180 is positioned adjacent the quiescent zone 128 in the second end 126 of the shell 120. It is desirable for the outlet 180 to positioned such that catalyst can be removed from the shell 120 through the quiescent zone 128. The apparatus 110 may also include an inlet 182 through which the catalyst may be placed into the apparatus 110. Although the inlet 182 is shown as being positioned on the second end 126 of the shell 120, the inlet 182 may be positioned at any position on the apparatus 110. Lines 184 are provided to remove products and unreacted feed, if any, from the separation zone 122 of the HCA 110.
  • A series of separation devices [0093] 186 are shown as being positioned in the separation zone 122 of shell 120. The separation devices 186 may be cyclonic separators, filters, screens, impingement devices, plates, cones or any other devices which would separate the catalyst from the product of the conversion reaction.
  • An impingement device [0094] 190 is positioned in the first end 124 of the shell 120. The impingement device 190 is provided to direct catalyst leaving the riser reactors 130 away from the second ends 134 of the riser reactors 130 and to limit the amount of catalyst falling back into the riser reactors 130. Desirably, the impingement device 190 is positioned opposite the second ends 134 of the riser reactors 130.
  • A series of supports [0095] 192 are also shown in FIG. 2. The supports 192 are merely shown to be illustrative of one possible means for supporting the HCA 110.
  • As one of skill in the art will appreciate, the HCA shown in FIG. 2 functions similarly to that shown in FIG. I and will not be discussed in detail except to illustrate those features not shown in FIG. 1. [0096]
  • With reference to FIG. 2, catalyst is provided to the catalyst retention zone [0097] 162 and is fluidized in the catalyst retention zone 162 and the catalyst returns 150 by the fluidizing fluid provided through the fluid distributor 170. The feed is provided to the riser reactors 130 through the feed distributor 140. The amount of feed provided to each of the riser reactors 130 is the same as that described above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 1. The catalyst and feed flow upwardly through the riser reactors 130, in the same manner as described above in conjunction with the description of the riser reactors 20 in FIG. 1.
  • With continuing reference to FIG. 2, the catalyst, product and unreacted feed, if any, exit through the second ends [0098] 134 of the riser reactors 130 into the separation zone 122 of the shell 120. At least a portion, and desirably most, of the catalyst contacts the impingement device 190 and is deflected toward the sides of the shell 120. The separators 186 separate at least a portion of the catalyst from the product and unreacted feed. The product and unreacted feed are removed from the shell 120 of the hydrocarbon conversion device 10 through the lines 184. The catalyst, which is separated by the separators 186, falls into the quiescent zone 128. The remainder of the catalyst is returned to contact the feed through the catalyst returns 150.
  • A portion of the catalyst contained in the quiescent zone [0099] 128 can be removed from one or more of the HCAes and be sent to a catalyst regeneration apparatus via outlet 180, such as catalyst regeneration apparatus 90 shown in FIG. 1, or removed from the HCA 110 for further processing. Additionally, catalyst in the quiescent zone 128 may spill over into the catalyst returns 150 and be returned to contact the feed.
  • Another embodiment of one or more of the HCA's of the present invention is shown in FIG. 3. The apparatus [0100] 200 comprises a shell 212, a plurality of riser reactors 220, feed distributors 230, and a catalyst return 250.
  • With continuing reference to FIG. 3, the shell [0101] 212 defines a separation zone 214 in which a product of the hydrocarbon conversion reaction is separated from the catalyst which catalyzes the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. Shell 212 includes a first end 216 and a second end 218.
  • Riser reactors [0102] 220 extend into shell 212 and the separation zone 214. Each riser reactor 220 includes a first end 222 into which the catalyst and feed are fed to conduct the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. Each riser reactor 220 further includes a second end 224 through which the catalyst, product, and unreacted feed, if any, exit the riser reactor 220. The first end 222 of each riser reactor 220 terminates in a mouth 226 through which the catalyst and feed are fed into the riser reactor 220. The number and dimensions of the riser reactors 220 is discussed above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 1.
  • With continuing reference to FIG. 3, to provide a feed to the riser reactors [0103] 220, at least one feed distributor 230 is positioned near the first ends 222 of the riser reactors 220. More than one feed distributor 230 may be employed to provide feed in various states, e.g., one feed distributor 230 may provide feed in a vapor form while a second feed distributor 230 may provide feed in a liquid form. Each feed distributor includes a body, not shown, from which at least one neck 232 extends. Each riser reactor 220 has at least one associated neck 232. Each feed distributor 230 terminates in a head 234. Each head 234 is positioned adjacent to the first end 222 of each riser reactor 220. Desirably, each head 234 extends upwardly into each riser reactor 220. More desirably, each head 234 is positioned at or above the mouth 226 of the first end 222 of each riser reactor 220. Feed distributor 230 may include an optional flow control device, not shown, positioned on feed distributor 230 to provide an equal amount of feed to each head 234. The flow control device can also be employed to measure flow as well. Further, a nozzle, not shown, may be positioned on each head 234 to further control the distribution of the feed to each riser reactor 220. Additionally, each head 234 may be fitted with screening device, not shown, to prevent back flow of catalyst into any of the feed distributors 230.
  • In the HCA [0104] 200 shown in FIG. 3, a single catalyst return 250 is positioned centrally in relation to the riser reactors 220. The catalyst return 250 provides fluid communication between the separation zone 214 of the shell 212 and the riser reactors 220. The catalyst return 250 has a first end 252 and a second end 254. The first end 252 of the catalyst return 250 opens into the first end 214 of shell 212 and the second end 254 of catalyst return 250 opens to the riser reactors 220. A series of arms 256 or standpipes are positioned on the second end 254 of the catalyst return 250. The arms 256 extend from the catalyst return 250 to each of the riser reactors 220 and provide fluid communication between the catalyst return 250 and the riser reactors 220. The number of arms 256 will correspond to the number of riser reactors 220 with each riser reactor 230 having at least one corresponding arm 256. The catalyst return 250 is provided to transport catalyst from the separation zone 214 of shell 212 to the first ends 222 of the riser reactors 220. Flow of catalyst through the catalyst return 250 may optionally be controlled through the use of a flow control device 258 positioned on the catalyst return 250 or on each arm 256. The flow control device(s) 258 can be any type of flow control devices currently in use in the art to control catalyst flow through catalyst transfer lines. If employed, the flow control device 258 is desirably a ball valve, a plug valve or a slide valve.
  • In the embodiment shown in FIG. 3, the first end [0105] 252 of the catalyst return 250 and the arms 256 define a catalyst retention zone 262. The arms 256 of the catalyst return 250 open to the catalyst retention zone 262. The catalyst retention zone 262 is provided to retain catalyst which is used to catalyze the hydrocarbon conversion reaction which is conducted in the apparatus 200. As one of skill in the art will appreciate, the boundary between the catalyst retention zone 262 and the catalyst return 250 is fluid and depends, at least in part, on the level of catalyst contained in the catalyst retention zone 262 and the arms 256 of the catalyst return 250.
  • At least one fluid distributor [0106] 270 is positioned beneath the catalyst retention zone 262. The fluid distributor 270 includes a conduit 272 into which a fluidizing fluid is fed to fluidize a fluidizable catalyst in the catalyst retention zone 262 and the catalyst return 250. Additional fluid distributors 270, as shown in FIG. 3, may also be positioned on the catalyst return 250 to further fluidize fluidizable catalyst contained in the catalyst return 250.
  • The HCA [0107] 200 may also include an outlet 280 through which the catalyst can be removed from the apparatus 200. The outlet 280 is shown as being positioned on the second end 218 of the shell 212 but may be positioned at any position on the apparatus 200. The apparatus 200 may also include an inlet 282 through which the catalyst may be placed into the apparatus 200. Although the inlet 282 is shown as being positioned on the second end 218 of the shell 212, the inlet 282 may be positioned at any position on the apparatus 200. A line 284 may be provided to remove products from the apparatus 200.
  • A series of separation devices [0108] 286 are shown as being positioned in the separation zone 214 of shell 212. The separation devices 286 may be cyclonic separators, filters, screens, impingement devices, plates, cones or any other devices which would separate the catalyst from the product of the conversion reaction. The separation devices 286 are shown in FIG. 3 as cyclonic separators 288.
  • A series of supports [0109] 292 are also shown in FIG. 3. The supports 292 are merely shown to be illustrative of one possible means for supporting the HCA 200.
  • The HCA [0110] 200 which is shown in FIG. 3 functions similarly to that shown in FIGS. 1 and 2. The apparatus 200 shown in FIG. 3 functions in the following manner.
  • The apparatus [0111] 200 is filled with an appropriate amount of catalyst which is retained in the catalyst return 250 and the catalyst retention zone 262. The catalyst is fluidized in the catalyst return 250 and the catalyst retention zone 262 by means of a fluidizing fluid which is provided to the HCA 200 through the conduits 272 of the fluid distributors 270. The flow of catalyst to the riser reactors 220 can be controlled by the flow control devices 258. Feed is provided to the riser reactors 220 through the feed distributors 230. The amount of feed provided to the riser reactors 220 is the same as that discussed above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 1. The feed and the catalyst flow upwardly in the riser reactors 230 by the principle of eduction which is also described above.
  • The catalyst, product and unreacted feed, if any, exit the riser reactors [0112] 220 through their second ends 224. The catalyst is separated from the product and any unreacted feed by the separation devices 286. The separated catalyst is fed to the second end 218 of shell 212 while the product and any unreacted feed are removed from the apparatus through the line 284.
  • A portion of the catalyst may be removed from the apparatus [0113] 200 through the outlet 280 and sent to a regeneration apparatus, not shown, or removed entirely from the apparatus 200. The regenerated catalyst is returned to the apparatus 200 through the inlet 282.
  • The separated catalyst enters the first end [0114] 252 of the catalyst return 250 and is recycled to be reused in the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. The catalyst is returned through the catalyst return 250 to the catalyst containment area 262 where the catalyst is maintained in a fluidized state by the fluidizing fluid provided through the fluid distributors 270.
  • Another embodiment of one or more of the HCA's [0115] 300 is shown in FIG. 4. The apparatus 300 comprises a shell 310, a plurality of riser reactors 330, a feed distributor 340 and a fluid distributor 350.
  • With continued reference to FIG. 4, the shell [0116] 310 is formed by a wall 312 and is hollow. Shell 310 has a first end 314 and a second end 316. The first end 314 of shell 310 defines a separation zone 318 in which the catalyst is separated from the product of the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. The shell 310 further includes a wall extension 320, which extends upwardly into the first end 314 of shell 310 from the second end 316 of shell 310, and a funnel portion 322. The wall extension 320 and the funnel portion 322 define a quiescent zone 324 in which a portion of the catalyst can be retained prior to being removed from the shell 310.
  • In the embodiment shown in FIG. 4, a plurality of riser reactors [0117] 330 are positioned inside shell 310, as shown in FIG. 4. Each riser reactor 330 extends substantially parallel to a longitudinal axis of shell 310 and has a wall 331. Each riser reactor 330 has a first end 332 and a second end 334. The first end 332 of each riser reactor 330 is positioned in the second end 316 of shell 310. The second end 334 of each riser reactor 330 extends into the first end 314 of shell 310. The first end 332 of each riser reactor 330 terminates in a mouth 335 through which the catalyst and feed are fed into the riser reactor 330. Although the HCA 300 is shown in FIG. 4 as containing three riser reactors 330, apparatus 300 desirably contains two or more riser reactors 330. The number and size of the riser reactors 330 is described in conjunction with the description of FIG. 1.
  • With continuing reference to FIG. 4, wall [0118] 312 of shell 310 and wall 331 of each of the riser reactors 330 define a catalyst retention zone 336. The catalyst retention zone 336 contains the catalyst utilized to catalyze the hydrocarbon conversion reaction. When the apparatus 300 is in operation, catalyst retention zone 336 contains the catalyst in a fluidized state, as will be described in detail below. Wall extension 320, wall 312 of the shell 310 and the walls 331 of each of the riser reactors 330 also define a catalyst return 338. The catalyst return 338 directs catalyst which has been used in a conversion reaction from the separation zone 318 in the first end 314 of the shell 310 to the catalyst retention zone 336. As one of skill in the art will appreciate, the boundary between the catalyst retention zone 336 and the catalyst return 338 is fluid and depends, at least in part, on the level of catalyst contained in the catalyst retention zone 336.
  • To provide a feed to the riser reactors [0119] 330, at least one feed distributor 340 is positioned near the first ends 332 of the riser reactors 330. More than one feed distributor 340 may be employed to provide feed in various states, e.g., one feed distributor 340 may provide feed in a vapor form while a second feed distributor 340 may provide feed in a liquid form. Feed distributor 340 includes a body 342 from which a plurality of necks 344 extend. Each riser reactor 330 has at least one associated neck 344. Each neck 344 terminates in a head 346. Each head 346 of each neck 344 is positioned adjacent to the first end 332 of each riser reactor 330. Desirably, each head 346 extends into each riser reactor 330. More desirably, each head 346 is positioned at or above the mouth 335 at the first end 332 of each riser reactor 330. Feed distributor 340 may include an optional flow control device 348 positioned on feed distributor 340 to provide an equal amount of feed to each neck 344 and, if desired, to measure the flow through each neck 344. As shown in FIG. 4, the flow control device 348 is a valve 350. Useful types of valves are described above. Further, a nozzle, not shown, may be fitted onto each head 346 to distribute the feed into each riser reactor 330. Additionally, each head 346 may be fitted with screening device, not shown, to prevent back flow of catalyst into any of necks 344 of feed distributor 340 and, subsequently into body 342 of feed distributor 340.
  • A fluid distributor [0120] 350 is also positioned in second end 316 of shell 310. The fluid distributor 350 includes a conduit 352 into which a fluidizing fluid is fed to fluidize a fluidizable catalyst in the catalyst retention zone 336 and the catalyst return 338. An optional disperser 354 may be positioned between the fluid distributor 350 and the catalyst retention zone 336 to disperse the fluidizing fluid about the catalyst retention zone 336 and the catalyst return 338. Disperser 354 is desirably positioned perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of shell 310 in the second end 316 of shell 310. Disperser 354 may be a screen, a grid, a perforated plate or similar device through which the fluidizing fluid is fed to provide even distribution of the fluidizing fluid to the catalyst retention zone 336.
  • To separate products from the hydrocarbon conversion reaction from the catalyst, a separator [0121] 360 or series of separators 360, may be positioned in first end 314 of shell 310. The separators 360 are shown in FIG. 4 as being cyclonic separators 362. Other types of separators 360 such as filters, screens, impingement devices, plates, cones and other devices which would separate the products from the catalyst may also be positioned in the first end 314 of shell 310. The number of separators 360 depends upon the desired operating efficiency, particle size of the catalyst, the gas superficial velocity, production capacity, and other parameters. The products are removed from shell 310 through a line 364 or a plurality of lines 364 for further processing such as, for example, separation and purification.
  • The apparatus [0122] 300 may further include an outlet 370 through which catalyst may be removed from the shell 310 and an inlet 372 through which catalyst may be placed into shell 310. The positioning of outlet 370 and inlet 372 is not critical. However, it is desirable for the outlet 370 to be positioned such that catalyst can be removed from the shell 310 through the quiescent zone 324.
  • An impingement device [0123] 380 is positioned in the first end 314 of the shell 310. The impingement device 380 is provided to direct catalyst leaving the riser reactors 330 away from the second ends 334 of the riser reactors 330 and to limit the amount of catalyst falling back into the riser reactors 330.
  • A support [0124] 392 is also shown in FIG. 4. The support 392 is merely shown to be illustrative of one possible means for supporting the HCA 300.
  • As shown in FIG. 4, one or more of the HCA's includes an associated catalyst regeneration apparatus [0125] 90 which is in fluid communication with the HCA 300. The catalyst regeneration apparatus 90 includes a catalyst regenerator 92, which is in fluid communication with the HCA 300 and an optional catalyst stripper 94, which is in fluid communication with the catalyst regenerator 92 and which may be in fluid communication with the HCA 300. A first line 96 provides fluid communication between the catalyst stripper 94 and shell 310 through outlet 370. Optionally, the catalyst stripper 94 may include a second input line (not shown) from a second HCA (not shown). In this manner, catalyst from the second HCA can be transported by the second input line to the catalyst stripper 94.A second line 98 provides fluid communication between the catalyst stripper 94 and the catalyst regenerator 92. A third line 100 provides fluid communication between the catalyst regenerator 92 and the inlet 372 on shell 310. A flow control device 102 may optionally be positioned on first line 96 to control the flow of catalyst between the shell 12 and the catalyst stripper 94. A flow control device 104 may optionally be positioned on second line 98 to control the flow of catalyst between the catalyst stripper 94 and the catalyst regenerator 92.
  • Although the catalyst stripper [0126] 94 is shown on FIG. 4 as being separate from the catalyst regenerator 92, one skilled in the art will appreciate that the catalyst stripper 94 may be integrally formed with the catalyst regenerator 92. One skilled in the art will also appreciate that, although FIG. 4 shows third line 100 as returning the catalyst to the separation zone 318 through line 372, the catalyst may also be returned to the catalyst return 338, the catalyst retention zone 336 and combinations of the separation zone 318, the catalyst return 338 and the catalyst retention zone 336.
  • When in operation, one or more of the HCA's, as shown in FIG. 4, functions in the following manner. The catalyst retention zone [0127] 336 is filled with a catalyst suitable to carry out the desired hydrocarbon conversion reaction. The catalyst should be of a type which is fluidizable. To fluidize the catalyst in the catalyst retention zone 336 and the catalyst return 338, a fluidizing fluid is fed into the fluid distributor 350 through conduit 352. The fluidizing fluid is dispersed within the shell 310 of the HCA 300 by the disperser 354. Useful fluidizing fluids include, but are not limited to, nitrogen, steam, carbon dioxide and hydrocarbons. The choice of fluidizing fluid depends upon the type of conversion reaction being conducted in the hydrocarbon conversion apparatus 300.
  • Once the catalyst has reached an acceptable fluidized state, a feed is fed into the HCA [0128] 300 through feed distributor 340. The feed enters the body 342 of feed distributor 340, passes through the necks 344 of feed distributor 340 and exits through the heads 346 of feed distributor 340. The feed is distributed to each of the riser reactors 330 through the mouths 335 at the first ends 332 of the riser reactors 330.
  • A pressure differential created by the velocity of the feed entering the first ends [0129] 332 of the riser reactors 330 and the pressure of the height of fluidizable catalyst in the catalyst retention zone 336 causes catalyst to be aspirated into the first ends 332 of the riser reactors 330. The catalyst is transported through the riser reactors 330 under well known principles of eduction in which the kinetic energy of one fluid, in this case the feed, is used to move another fluid, in this case the fluidized catalyst. The catalyst and feed travel from the first ends 332 to the second ends 334 of the riser reactors 330. As the catalyst and feed travel through the riser reactors 330, the hydrocarbon conversion reaction occurs and a conversion product is produced.
  • The conversion product(s), unreacted feed, if any, and the catalyst exit the riser reactors [0130] 330 through their second ends 334 and enter the catalyst separation zone 318 in the first end 314 of shell 310. In the catalyst separation zone 318, the conversion product and unreacted feed, if any, are separated from the catalyst by the separator 360. Desirably, the conversion product and unreacted feed, if any, are separated by a series of cyclonic separators 362 as shown in FIG. 4. Further, at least a portion of the catalyst exiting the riser reactors 330 contacts the impingement device 380 and is deflected away from the second ends 334 of the riser reactors 330 to the quiescent zone 324.
  • Once the catalyst has been separated from the conversion product and the unreacted feed, if any, are removed from the shell [0131] 310 through the lines 364 for further processing such as separation and purification. A portion of the catalyst falls to the quiescent zone 324 in which the catalyst is retained until it is removed from the shell 310. The catalyst is removed from the quiescent zone 324 through outlet 370 and can be sent for regeneration in the catalyst regeneration apparatus 90.
  • The catalyst regenerator [0132] 92 preferably receives catalyst from a plurality of HCA's as illustrated in FIG. 6, and as described in more detail below. As shown in FIG. 4, the catalyst regenerator 92 optionally may receive catalyst via second line 98 and line 101, which is connected to a second HCA (not shown). Optionally, line 101 may be directed to a second stropping unit (not shown) which is in fluid communication with the second HCA. In this embodiment, catalyst may be delivered to the catalyst regenerator 92 from the second HCA through line 101. Similarly, catalyst from more than two HCA's may be directed to the catalyst stripper 94. Additionally or alternatively, catalyst from more than two HCA's may be directed to the catalyst regenerator 92. The function of the catalyst regeneration apparatus 90 is discussed above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 1 and will not be discussed in further detail here. A portion of the catalyst in the quiescent zone 324 will fall out of the quiescent zone 324 into the catalyst return 338 and be returned to contact the feed.
  • Returning to FIG. 4, the remaining portion of the catalyst, after being separated from the products and unreacted feed, falls from the first end [0133] 314 of shell 310 through the catalyst return 338 to the catalyst retention zone 336. From the catalyst retention zone 336, the catalyst is recycled for use in the hydrocarbon conversion reaction.
  • Representative embodiments of possible configurations of riser reactors and catalyst returns are shown in cross section in FIG. 5. FIG. 5A shows a possible configuration for the riser reactors [0134] 20 for the HCA 10 shown in FIG. 1. As shown in FIG. 5A, the riser reactors 20 are contained within a shell 26. If contained within a shell 26, the area between the riser reactors and the shell 26 is filled with refractory material 28. Useful refractory materials 28 include sand, cement, ceramic materials, high alumina bricks containing mullite or corundum, high silica bricks, magnesite bricks, insulating firebrick of clay or kaolin or any other high temperature resistant material.
  • FIG. 5B shows a cross section of a HCA similar to apparatus [0135] 10 shown in FIG. 1. In this embodiment, the riser reactors 20 are again contained within a shell 26. The shell 26 is filled with refractory material 28 as described above. In this embodiment, the catalyst returns 50 are also contained within the shell 26 and surrounded by the refractory material 28.
  • FIG. 5C shows a possible configuration for the riser reactors [0136] 220 shown in FIG. 3. In the embodiment shown in FIG. 5C, the catalyst return 250 is shown as being centrally positioned in relation to the riser reactors 220. The riser reactors 220 and the catalyst return 250 are contained within a shell 226. The area between the riser reactors and the shell 226 is filled with refractory material 228. Useful refractory materials are described above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 5A.
  • FIG. 5D shows a possible configuration for the riser reactors [0137] 330 shown in FIG. 4. As shown in FIG. 5D, the riser reactors 330 are centrally located within the shell 310. As described above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 4, the walls 331 of the riser reactors 330 and the shell 310 define the catalyst return 338. The area between the riser reactors 330 can optionally be filled with a first refractory material 382. The shell 310 may also be optionally filled with a second refractory material 384. Useful refractory materials are described above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 5A. With continuing reference to FIG. 5D, a person of skill in the art will appreciate that the first refractory material 382 and the second refractory material 384 can be the same or different material.
  • FIG. 5E shows another possible configuration for the riser reactors [0138] 330 shown in FIG. 4. As shown in FIG. 5E, the riser reactors 330 are centrally located within the shell 310. In this embodiment, the riser reactors 330 are contained within a second shell 386 which has a wall 388. The catalyst return 338 is defined by the wall 388 of the second shell 386 and the shell 310. The areas between the walls 331 of the riser reactors 330 and the wall 388 of the second shell 386 are filled with a first refractory material 390. The shell 310 may also be filled with a second refractory material 392. Useful refractory materials are described above in conjunction with the description of FIG. 5A. With continuing reference to FIG. 5E, a person of skill in the art will appreciate that the first refractory material 390 and the second refractory material 392 can be the same or different material.
  • While the riser reactors and catalyst returns are shown in the various Figures as having a circular cross section, the riser reactors and catalyst returns may have any cross section which would facilitate operation of the HCA. Other useful cross sections for the riser reactors and the catalyst returns include elliptical cross sections, polygonal cross sections and cross sections of sections of ellipses and polygons. Desirable cross-sections for the riser reactors and catalyst returns include circles and regular polygons with sides of equal lengths. By “regular”, it is meant that the shape of the cross-section has no line segments with vertices, inside the boundaries of the shape, having angles greater than 180°. The most desirable cross-sections are circles, and triangles, squares, and hexagons with sides of equal length. The means of determining cross-sectional areas for any cross-section shape is based on long established geometric principles well known to those skilled in the art. Similarly, desirable cross-sections for the separation zone include circles and regular polygons with sides of equal lengths. The most desirable cross-sections are circles, and triangles, squares, and hexagons with sides of equal length. [0139]
  • While the position of the riser reactors relative to the separation zone are shown in the figures as equidistant and symmetrical, alternate configurations are within the scope of the present invention. For example, the riser reactors may be positioned on one side of the separation zone in a hemispherical layout. As another example, when the separation zone has a circular or approximately circular cross-section, the riser reactors may be positioned in a line along the diameter the separation zone. One skilled in the art will appreciate that a wide variety of configurations of the risers relative to the separation zone may be utilized in the present invention. [0140]
  • One skilled in the art will further appreciate that the optional multiple riser reactors in a given HCA of the present invention may be formed by dividing a single riser reactor into a plurality of smaller riser reactors. For example, a larger, reactor having a circular cross section could be divided into several pie-shaped riser reactors. As another example, a riser reactor having a square cross section could be divided into a plurality of riser reactors having either rectangular or smaller square cross sections. [0141]
  • The optional multiple riser HCA's of the present invention are useful to conduct most any hydrocarbon conversion process in which a fluidized catalyst is employed. Typical reactions include, for example, olefin interconversion reactions, oxygenate to olefin conversion reactions (e.g., MTO reactions), oxygenate to gasoline conversion reactions, malaeic anhydride formulation, vapor phase methanol synthesis, phthalic anhydride formulation, Fischer Tropsch reactions, and acrylonitrile formulation. One or more of these hydrocarbon conversion processes may be coupled to, e.g., in fluid communication with the integrated catalyst regeneration system in accordance with the present invention. For example, in one embodiment, a first HCA produces light olefins through an MTO reaction process, while a second HCA performs an olefin interconversion process. Both the first and second HCA's may send catalyst to an integrated regeneration system. [0142]
  • The process for converting oxygenates to olefins employs a feed including an oxygenate. As used herein, the term “oxygenate” is defined to include, but is not necessarily limited to, hydrocarbons containing oxygen such as the following: aliphatic alcohols, ethers, carbonyl compounds (aldehydes, ketones, carboxylic acids, carbonates, and the like), and mixtures thereof. The aliphatic moiety desirably should contain in the range of from about 1-10 carbon atoms and more desirably in the range of from about 1-4 carbon atoms. Representative oxygenates include, but are not necessarily limited to, lower molecular weight straight chain or branched aliphatic alcohols, and their unsaturated counterparts. Examples of suitable oxygenates include, but are not necessarily limited to the following: methanol; ethanol; n-propanol; isopropanol; C[0143] 4-C10 alcohols; methyl ethyl ether; dimethyl ether; diethyl ether; di-isopropyl ether; methyl formate; formaldehyde; di-methyl carbonate; methyl ethyl carbonate; acetone; and mixtures thereof. Desirably, the oxygenate used in the conversion reaction is selected from the group consisting of methanol, dimethyl ether and mixtures thereof. More desirably the oxygenate is methanol. The total charge of feed to the riser reactors may contain additional components, such as diluents.
  • One or more diluents may be fed to the riser reactors with the oxygenates, such that the total feed mixture comprises diluent in a range of from about 1 mol % and about 99 mol %. Diluents which may be employed in the process include, but are not necessarily limited to, helium, argon, nitrogen, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, water, paraffins, other hydrocarbons (such as methane), aromatic compounds, and mixtures thereof. Desired diluents include, but are not necessarily limited to, water and nitrogen. [0144]
  • A portion of the feed may be provided to the reactor in liquid form. When a portion of the feed is provided in a liquid form, the liquid portion of the feed may be either oxygenate, diluent or a mixture of both. The liquid portion of the feed may be directly injected into the individual riser reactors, or entrained or otherwise carried into the riser reactors with the vapor portion of the feed or a suitable carrier gas/diluent. By providing a portion of the feed (oxygenate and/or diluent) in the liquid phase, the temperature in the riser reactors can be controlled. The exothermic heat of reaction of oxygenate conversion is partially absorbed by the endothermic heat of vaporization of the liquid portion of the feed. Controlling the proportion of liquid feed to vapor feed fed to the reactor is one possible method for controlling the temperature in the reactor and in particular in the riser reactors. [0145]
  • The amount of feed provided in a liquid form, whether fed separately or jointly with the vapor feed, is from about 0.1 wt. % to about 85 wt. % of the total oxygenate content plus diluent in the feed. More desirably, the range is from about 1 wt. % to about 75 wt. % of the total oxygenate plus diluent feed, and most desirably the range is from about 5 wt. % to about 65 wt. %. The liquid and vapor portions of the feed may be the same composition, or may contain varying proportions of the same or different oxygenates and same or different diluents. One particularly effective liquid diluent is water, due to its relatively high heat of vaporization, which allows for a high impact on the reactor temperature differential with a relatively small rate. Other useful diluents are described above. Proper selection of the temperature and pressure of any appropriate oxygenate and/or diluent being fed to the reactor will ensure at least a portion is in the liquid phase as it enters the reactor and/or comes into contact with the catalyst or a vapor portion of the feed and/or diluent. [0146]
  • Optionally, the liquid fraction of the feed may be split into portions and introduced to riser reactors a multiplicity of locations along the length of the riser reactors. This may be done with either the oxygenate feed, the diluent or both. Typically, this is done with the diluent portion of the feed. Another option is to provide a nozzle which introduces the total liquid fraction of the feed to the riser reactors in a manner such that the nozzle forms liquid droplets of an appropriate size distribution which, when entrained with the gas and solids introduced to the riser reactors, vaporize gradually along the length of the riser, reactors. Either of these arrangements or a combination thereof may be used to better control the temperature differential in the riser reactors. The means of introducing a multiplicity of liquid feed points in a reactor or designing a liquid feed nozzle to control droplet size distribution is well known in the art and is not discussed here. [0147]
  • The catalyst suitable for catalyzing an oxygenate-to-olefin conversion reaction includes a molecular sieve and mixtures of molecular sieves. Molecular sieves can be zeolitic (zeolites) or non-zeolitic (non-zeolites). Useful catalysts may also be formed from mixtures of zeolitic and non-zeolitic molecular sieves. Desirably, the catalyst includes a non-zeolitic molecular sieve. Desired molecular sieves for use with an oxygenate to olefins conversion reaction include “small” and “medium” pore molecular sieves. “Small pore” molecular sieves are defined as molecular sieves with pores having a diameter of less than about 5.0 Angstroms. “Medium pore” molecular sieves are defined as molecular sieves with pores having a diameter from about 5.0 to about 10.0 Angstroms. [0148]
  • Useful zeolitic molecular sieves include, but are not limited to, mordenite, chabazite, erionite, ZSM-5, ZSM-34, ZSM-48 and mixtures thereof. Methods of making these molecular sieves are known in the art and need not be discussed here. Structural types of small pore molecular sieves that are suitable for use in this invention include AEI, AFT, APC, ATN, ATT, ATV, AWW, BIK, CAS, CHA, CHI, DAC, DDR, EDI, FRI, GOO, KFI, LEV, LOV, LTA, MON, PAU, PHI, RHO, ROG, THO, and substituted forms thereof. Structural types of medium pore molecular sieves that are suitable for use in this invention include MFI, MEL, MTW, EUO, MTT, HEU, FER, AFO, AEL, TON, and substituted forms thereof. [0149]
  • Silicoaluminophosphates (“SAPOs”) are one group of non-zeolitic molecular sieves that are useful in an oxygenate to olefins conversion reaction. SAPOs comprise a three-dimensional microporous crystal framework structure of [SiO[0150] 2], [AlO2] and [PO2] tetrahedral units. The way Si is incorporated into the structure can be determined by 29Si MAS NMR. See Blackwell and Patton, J. Phys. Chem., 92, 3965 (1988). The desired SAPO molecular sieves will exhibit one or more peaks in the 29Si MAS NMR, with a chemical shift [(Si)] in the range of −88 to −96 ppm and with a combined peak area in that range of at least 20% of the total peak area of all peaks with a chemical shift [(Si)] in the range of −88 ppm to −115 ppm, where the [(Si)] chemical shifts refer to external tetramethylsilane (TMS).
  • It is desired that the silicoaluminophosphate molecular sieve used in such a process have a relatively low Si/Al[0151] 2 ratio. In general, the lower the Si/Al2 ratio, the lower the C1-C4 saturates selectivity, particularly propane selectivity. A Si/Al2 ratio of less than 0.65 is desirable, with a Si/Al2 ratio of not greater than 0.40 being preferred, and a SiAl2 ratio of not greater than 0.32 being particularly preferred.
  • Silicoaluminophosphate molecular sieves are generally classified as being microporous materials having 8, 10, or 12 membered ring structures. These ring structures can have an average pore size ranging from about 3.5-15 angstroms. Preferred are the small pore SAPO molecular sieves having an average pore size ranging from about 3.5 to 5 angstroms, more preferably from 4.0 to 5.0 angstroms. These pore sizes are typical of molecular sieves having 8 membered rings. [0152]
  • In general, silicoaluminophosphate molecular sieves comprise a molecular framework of corner-sharing [SiO[0153] 2], [AlO2], and [PO2] tetrahedral units. This type of framework is effective in converting various oxygenates into olefin products.
  • Suitable silicoaluminophosphate molecular sieves for use in an oxygenate to olefin conversion process include SAPO-5, SAPO-8, SAPO-11, SAPO-16, SAPO-17, SAPO-18, SAPO-20, SAPO-31, SAPO-34, SAPO-35, SAPO-36, SAPO-37, SAPO-40, SAPO-41, SAPO-42, SAPO-44, SAPO-47, SAPO-56, the metal containing forms thereof, and mixtures thereof. Preferred are SAPO-18, SAPO-34, SAPO-35, SAPO-44, and SAPO-47, particularly SAPO-18 and SAPO-34, including the metal containing forms thereof, and mixtures thereof. As used herein, the term mixture is synonymous with combination and is considered a composition of matter having two or more components in varying proportions, regardless of their physical state. [0154]
  • Additional olefin-forming molecular sieve materials can be mixed with the silicoaluminophosphate catalyst if desired. Several types of molecular sieves exist, each of which exhibit different properties. Structural types of small pore molecular sieves that are suitable for use in this invention include AEI, AFT, APC, ATN, ATT, ATV, AWW, BIK, CAS, CHA, CHI, DAC, DDR, EDI, ERI, GOO, KFI, LEV, LOV, LTA, MON, PAU, PHI, RHO, ROG, THO, and substituted forms thereof. Structural types of medium pore molecular sieves that are suitable for use in this invention include MFI, MEL, MTW, EUO, MTT, HEU, FER, AFO, AEL, TON, and substituted forms thereof. Preferred molecular sieves which can be combined with a silicoaluminophosphate catalyst include ZSM-5, ZSM-34, erionite, and chabazite. [0155]
  • Substituted SAPOs form a class of molecular sieves known as “MeAPSOs,” which are also useful in the present invention. Processes for making MeAPSOs are known in the art. SAPOs with substituents, such as MeAPSOs, also may be suitable for use in the present invention. Suitable substituents, “Me,” include, but are not necessarily limited to, nickel, cobalt, manganese, zinc, titanium, strontium, magnesium, barium, and calcium. The substituents may be incorporated during synthesis of the MeAPSOs. Alternately, the substituents may be incorporated after synthesis of SAPOs or MeAPSOs using many methods. These methods include, but are not necessarily limited to, ion-exchange, incipient wetness, dry mixing, wet mixing, mechanical mixing, and combinations thereof. [0156]
  • Desired MeAPSOs are small pore MeAPSOs having pore size smaller than about 5 Angstroms. Small pore MeAPSOs include, but are not necessarily limited to, NiSAPO-34, CoSAPO-34, NiSAPO-17, CoSAPO-17, and mixtures thereof. [0157]
  • Aluminophosphates (ALPOs) with substituents, also known as “MeAPOs,” are another group of molecular sieves that may be suitable for use in an oxygenate to olefin conversion reaction, with desired MeAPOs being small pore MeAPOs. Processes for making MeAPOs are known in the art. Suitable substituents include, but are not necessarily limited to, nickel, cobalt, manganese, zinc, titanium, strontium, magnesium, barium, and calcium. The substituents may be incorporated during synthesis of the MeAPOs. Alternately, the substituents may be incorporated after synthesis of ALPOs or MeAPOs using many methods. The methods include, but are not necessarily limited to, ion-exchange, incipient wetness, dry mixing, wet mixing, mechanical mixing, and combinations thereof [0158]
  • The molecular sieve may also be incorporated into a solid composition, preferably solid particles, in which the molecular sieve is present in an amount effective to catalyze the desired conversion reaction. The solid particles may include a catalytically effective amount of the molecular sieve and matrix material, preferably at least one of a filler material and a binder material, to provide a desired property or properties, e.g., desired catalyst dilution, mechanical strength and the like, to the solid composition. Such matrix materials are often to some extent porous in nature and often have some nonselective catalytic activity to promote the formation of undesired products and may or may not be effective to promote the desired chemical conversion. Such matrix, e.g., filler and binder, materials include, for example, synthetic and naturally occurring substances, metal oxides, clays, silicas, aluminas, silica-aluminas, silica-magnesias, silica-zirconias, silica-thorias, silica-beryllias, silica-titanias, silica-alumina-thorias, silica-aluminazirconias, and mixtures of these materials. [0159]
  • The solid catalyst composition preferably comprises about 1% to about 99%, more preferably about 5% to about 90%, and still more preferably about 10% to about 80%, by weight of molecular sieve; and an amount of about 1% to about 99%, more preferably about 5% to about 90%, and still more preferably about 10% to about 80%, by weight of matrix material. [0160]
  • The preparation of solid catalyst compositions, e.g., solid particles, comprising the molecular sieve and matrix material, is conventional and well known in the art and, therefore, is not discussed in detail here. [0161]
  • The catalyst may further contain binders, fillers, or other material to provide better catalytic performance, attrition resistance, regenerability, and other desired properties. Desirably, the catalyst is fluidizable under the reaction conditions. The catalyst should have particle sizes of from about 5μ to about 3,000μ, desirably from about 10μ to about 200μ, and more desirably from about 20μ to about 150μ. The catalyst may be subjected to a variety of treatments to achieve the desired physical and chemical characteristics. Such treatments include, but are not necessarily limited to, calcination, ball milling, milling, grinding, spray drying, hydrothermal treatment, acid treatment, base treatment, and combinations thereof. [0162]
  • Desirably, in an oxygenate to olefin conversion reaction conducted in one or more HCA's of the present invention employs a gas superficial velocity in the riser reactors of greater than 1 meter per second (m/s). As used herein and in the claims, the term, “gas superficial velocity,” is defined as the volumetric flow rate of vaporized feedstock, and any diluent, divided by the reactor cross-sectional area. Because the oxygenate is converted to a product including a light olefin while flowing through the reactor, the gas superficial velocity may vary at different locations within the reactor depending on the total number of moles of gas present and the cross section of a particular location in the reactor, temperature, pressure, and other relevant reaction parameters. The gas superficial velocity, including any diluents present in the feedstock, is maintained at a rate greater than 1 meter per second (m/s) at any point in the reactor. Desirably, the gas superficial velocity is greater than about 2 m/s. More desirably, the gas superficial velocity is greater than about 2.5 m/s. Even more desirably, the gas superficial velocity is greater than about 4 m/s. Most desirably, the gas superficial velocity is greater than about 8 m/s. [0163]
  • Maintaining the gas superficial velocity at these rates increases the approach to plug flow behavior of the gases flowing in the riser reactors. As the gas superficial velocity increases above 1 m/s, a reduction in axial diffusion or back mixing of the gases results from a reduction in internal recirculation of solids, which carry gas with them. (Ideal plug flow behavior occurs when elements of the homogeneous fluid reactant move through a reactor as plugs moving parallel to the reactor axis). Minimizing the back mixing of the gases in the reactor increases the selectivity to the desired light olefins in the oxygenate conversion reaction. [0164]
  • When the gas superficial velocity approaches 1 m/s or higher, a substantial portion of the catalyst in the reactor may be entrained with the gas exiting the riser reactors. At least a portion of the catalyst exiting the riser reactors is recirculated to recontact the feed through the catalyst return. [0165]
  • Desirably, the rate of catalyst, comprising molecular sieve and any other materials such as binders, fillers, etc., recirculated to recontact the feed is from about 1 to about 100 times, more desirably from about 10 to about 80 times, and most desirably from about 10 to about 50 times the total feed rate, by weight, of oxygenates to the reactor. [0166]
  • The temperature useful to convert oxygenates to light olefins varies over a wide range depending, at least in part, on the catalyst, the fraction of regenerated catalyst in a catalyst mixture, and the configuration of the reactor apparatus and the reactor. Although these processes are not limited to a particular temperature, best results are obtained if the process is conducted at a temperature from about 200° C. to about 1000° C., more preferably from about 200° C. to about 700° C., desirably from about 250° C. to about 600° C., and most desirably from about 300° C. to about 500° C. Lower temperatures generally result in lower rates of reaction, and the formation rate of the desired light olefin products may become markedly slower. However, at temperatures greater than 700° C., the process may not form an optimum amount of light olefin products, and the rate at which coke and light saturates form on the catalyst may become too high. [0167]
  • Light olefins will form—although not necessarily in optimum amounts—at a wide range of pressures including, but not limited to, pressures from about 0.1 kPa to about 5 MPa. A desired pressure is from about 5 kPa to about 1 MPa and most desirably from about 20 kPa to about 500 kPa. The foregoing pressures do not include that of a diluent, if any, and refer to the partial pressure of the feed as it relates to oxygenate compounds and/or mixtures thereof. Pressures outside of the stated ranges may be used and are not excluded from the scope of the invention. Lower and upper extremes of pressure may adversely affect selectivity, conversion, coking rate, and/or reaction rate; however, light olefins will still form and, for that reason, these extremes of pressure are considered part of the present invention. [0168]
  • A wide range of WHSV's for the oxygenate conversion reaction, defined as weight of total oxygenate fed to the riser reactors per hour per weight of molecular sieve in the catalyst in the riser reactors, function with the present invention. The total oxygenate fed to the riser reactors includes all oxygenate in both the vapor and liquid phase. Although the catalyst may contain other materials which act as inerts, fillers or binders, the WHSV is calculated using only the weight of molecular sieve in the catalyst in the riser reactors. The WHSV is desirably high enough to maintain the catalyst in a fluidized state under the reaction conditions and within the reactor configuration and design. Generally, the WHSV is from about 1 hr[0169] −1 to about 5000 hr−1, desirably from about 2 hr−1 to about 3000 hr−1, and most desirably from about 5 hr−1 to about 1500 hr−1. The applicants have discovered that operation of the oxygenate to olefin conversion reaction at a WHSV greater than 20 hr−1 reduces the methane content in the product slate of the conversion reaction. Thus, the conversion reaction is desirably operated at a WHSV of at least about 20 hr−1. For a feed comprising methanol, dimethyl ether, or mixtures thereof, the WHSV is desirably at least about 20 hr−1 and more desirably from about 20 hr−1 to about 300 hr−1.
  • The method of making the preferred olefin product in this invention can include the additional step of making the oxygenate compositions from hydrocarbons such as oil, coal, tar sand, shale, biomass and natural gas. Methods for making the compositions are known in the art. These methods include fermentation to alcohol or ether, making synthesis gas, then converting the synthesis gas to alcohol or ether. Synthesis gas can be produced by known processes such as steam reforming, autothermal reforming and partial oxidization. [0170]
  • One skilled in the art will also appreciate that the olefins produced by the oxygenate-to-olefin conversion reaction of the present invention can be polymerized to form polyolefins, particularly polyethylene and polypropylene. Processes for forming polyolefins from olefins are known in the art. Catalytic processes are preferred. Particularly preferred are metallocene, Ziegler/Natta and acid catalytic systems. See, for example, U.S. Pat. Nos. 3,258,455; 3,305,538; 3,364,190; 5,892,079; 4,659,685; 4,076,698; 3,645,992; 4,302,565; and 4,243,691, the catalyst and process descriptions of each being expressly incorporated herein by reference. In general, these methods involve contacting the olefin product with a polyolefin-forming catalyst at a pressure and temperature effective to form the polyolefin product. [0171]
  • A preferred polyolefin-forming catalyst is a metallocene catalyst. The preferred temperature range of operation is between 50° C. and 240° C. and the reaction can be carried out at low, medium or high pressure, being anywhere from 1 bar to 200 bars. For processes carried out in solution, an inert diluent can be used, and the preferred operating pressure range is between 10 and 150 bars, with a preferred temperature between 120° C. and 230° C. For gas phase processes, it is preferred that the temperature generally be from 60° C. to 160° C., and that the operating pressure be from 5 bars to 50 bars. [0172]
  • In addition to polyolefins, numerous other olefin derivatives may be formed from the olefins produced by the process of the present invention or olefins recovered therefrom. These include, but are not limited to, aldehydes, alcohols, acetic acid, linear alpha olefins, vinyl acetate, ethylene dichloride and vinyl chloride, ethylbenzene, ethylene oxide, ethylene glycol, cumene, isopropyl alcohol, acrolein, allyl chloride, propylene oxide, acrylic acid, ethylene-propylene rubbers, and acrylonitrile, and trimers and dimers of ethylene, propylene or butylenes. The methods of manufacturing these derivatives are well known in the art, and therefore are not discussed here. [0173]
  • Persons of ordinary skill in the art will recognize that many modifications may be made to the present invention without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention. The embodiments described herein are meant to be illustrative only and should not be taken as limiting the invention, which is defined by the following claims. [0174]

Claims (79)

  1. 1. A reactor system, comprising:
    a plurality of reactor units;
    a regenerator for converting an at least partially deactivated catalyst to a regenerated catalyst;
    a first conduit system for transferring the at least partially deactivated catalyst from the reactor units to the regenerator; and
    a second conduit system for transferring the regenerated catalyst from the regenerator to the plurality of reactor units.
  2. 2. The system of claim 1, wherein the first conduit system includes a first stripping unit for stripping the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a first stripping medium.
  3. 3. The system of claim 2, wherein the first conduit system includes a second stripping unit for stripping the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a second stripping medium.
  4. 4. The system of claim 3, wherein the first and second stripping units strip at least partially deactivated catalysts from separate reactor units.
  5. 5. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes two riser reactors.
  6. 6. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes three riser reactors.
  7. 7. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes four riser reactors.
  8. 8. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes five riser reactors.
  9. 9. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes six riser reactors.
  10. 10. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes more than six riser reactors.
  11. 11. The system of claim 1, wherein the system includes two reactor units.
  12. 12. The system of claim 1, wherein the system includes three reactor units.
  13. 13. The system of claim 1, wherein the system includes four reactor units.
  14. 14. The system of claim 1, wherein the system includes more than four reactor units.
  15. 15. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes a plurality of riser reactors and a catalyst retention zone provided to contain catalyst which can be fed to the plurality of riser reactors.
  16. 16. The system of claim 15, wherein each riser reactor in the at least one of the reactor units includes a first end into which the catalyst can be fed and a second end through which the catalyst can exit the riser reactor, and wherein the at least one of the reactor units includes a separation zone into which the second ends of the riser reactors discharge the catalyst and products of a reaction conducted in the at least one of the reactor units, the separation zone being provided to separate the catalyst from the products.
  17. 17. The system of claim 16, wherein the at least one of the reactor units includes a catalyst return in fluid communication with the separation zone thereof and the catalyst retention zone thereof.
  18. 18. The system of claim 17, wherein the at least one of the reactor units includes a feed distributor including at least one feed head positioned adjacent to each of the first ends of the plurality of riser reactors therein.
  19. 19. The system of claim 18, wherein the plurality of riser reactors in the at least one of the reactor units is contained within a common shell having a wall.
  20. 20. The system of claim 19, wherein the plurality of riser reactors in the at least one of the reactor units, and the respective wall, define the catalyst retention zone.
  21. 21. The system of claim 20, wherein the shell of the at least one of the reactor units defines the separation zone.
  22. 22. The system of claim 20, wherein the wall of the shell of the at least one of the reactor units, and the plurality of riser reactors therein, define the catalyst return.
  23. 23. The system of claim 18, wherein the feed distributor of the at least one of the reactor units provides feed to each of the plurality of riser reactors therein in substantially equal streams through the at least one feed head.
  24. 24. The system of claim 18, wherein the feed distributor in the at least one of the reactor units includes a flow control device which provides the feed to each of the plurality of riser reactors therein through the feed heads.
  25. 25. The system of claim 18, wherein the at least one of the reactor units further includes a fluid distributor in fluid communication with the catalyst retention zone thereof, the fluid distributor being provided to feed a fluidizing fluid to the catalyst retention zone to fluidize catalyst contained in the catalyst retention zone.
  26. 26. The system of claim 25, wherein the at least one of the reactor units further includes a disperser, positioned in the first end of the shell, the disperser being provided to disperse the fluidizing fluid in the catalyst retention zone to fluidize the catalyst.
  27. 27. The system of claim 26, wherein the disperser is a device selected from the group consisting of a grid, a screen and a perforated plate.
  28. 28. The system of claim 18, wherein the catalyst return is positioned externally to the plurality of riser reactors in the at least one of the reactor units.
  29. 29. The system of claim 28, wherein the number of the catalyst returns in the at least one of the reactor units equals the number of the plurality of riser reactors in the at least one of the reactor units.
  30. 30. The system of claim 18, wherein the at least one of the reactor units includes a plurality of catalyst returns.
  31. 31. The system of claim 30, wherein the at least one of the reactor units includes three catalyst returns.
  32. 32. The system of claim 30, wherein the at least one of the reactor units includes four catalyst returns.
  33. 33. The system of claim 30, wherein the at least one of the reactor units includes a flow control device positioned on at least one of the catalyst returns thereof.
  34. 34. The system of claim 30, wherein the at least one of the reactor units further includes a flow control device positioned on each of the plurality of catalyst returns thereof.
  35. 35. The system of claim 18, wherein each of the plurality of riser reactors in the at least one of the reactor units is contained within a common shell.
  36. 36. The system of claim 18, wherein the at least one of the reactor units further includes an impingement device positioned in the separation zone, the impingement device being provided to move catalyst away from the second ends of the plurality of riser reactors thereof to the catalyst return.
  37. 37. The system of claim 35, wherein the at least one of the reactor units further includes an impingement device positioned in the separation zone, the impingement device being provided to move catalyst away from the second ends of the plurality of riser reactors thereof to the catalyst return.
  38. 38. The system of claim 18, wherein the separation zone further includes a quiescent zone in which catalyst can be retained until the catalyst moves from the separation zone.
  39. 39. The system of claim 20, wherein the wall of the shell of the at least one of the reactor units and the plurality of riser reactors therein define a quiescent zone in which catalyst is contained until the catalyst moves from the separation zone.
  40. 40. The system of claim 16, wherein the at least one of the reactor units further includes at least one separator positioned in the separation zone.
  41. 41. The system of claim 40, wherein the separator is selected from the group consisting of a cyclonic separator, a filter, an impingement device and combinations thereof.
  42. 42. The system of claim 1, wherein each of the plurality of riser reactors has a cross sectional area of no greater than 12 m2.
  43. 43. The system of claim 42, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes a plurality of riser reactors, each riser reactor having a cross sectional area of no greater than 7 m2.
  44. 44. The system of claim 43, wherein each of the plurality of riser reactors has a cross sectional area or no greater than 3.5 m2.
  45. 45. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes a plurality of riser reactors, each riser reactor having a height of from 10 meters to 70 meters.
  46. 46. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes a plurality of riser reactors, each riser reactor having a width of from 1 meter to 3 meters.
  47. 47. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes a plurality of riser reactors, each riser reactor having a cross sectional area and the cross sectional area of one riser reactor varies by no more than 20% from the cross sectional area of another riser reactor in a single reactor unit.
  48. 48. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes a plurality of riser reactors, each riser reactor having a cross sectional area and the cross sectional area of one riser reactor varies by no more than 10% from the cross sectional area of another riser reactor in a single reactor unit.
  49. 49. The system of claim 1, wherein at least one of the reactor units includes a plurality of riser reactors, each riser reactor having a cross sectional area and the cross sectional area of one riser reactor varies by no more than 1% from the cross sectional area of another riser reactor in a single reactor unit.
  50. 50. A reactor system, comprising:
    a first reaction unit comprising a first plurality of riser reactors;
    a second reaction unit comprising a second plurality of riser reactors, wherein each of the first and second reaction units has a first end into which a catalyst can be fed and a second end through which the catalyst can exit the reaction unit;
    a regeneration unit having a regeneration inlet and a regeneration outlet;
    a regeneration line having a plurality of first line ends in fluid communication with the second ends of the first and second reaction units and a second line end extending to the regeneration inlet; and
    a return line having a first return end in fluid communication with the regeneration outlet, a second return end directing a first portion of the catalyst to the first reaction unit, and a third return end directing a second portion of the catalyst to the second reaction unit.
  51. 51. The system of claim 50, further comprising:
    a first stripping unit having a first stripping inlet in fluid communication with the second end of the first reaction unit and a first stripping outlet in fluid communication with the regenerator inlet.
  52. 52. The system of claim 51, wherein the first stripping inlet is in fluid communication with the second end of the second reaction unit.
  53. 53. The system of claim 52, further comprising:
    a first stripping return line having a first stripping return end in fluid communication with the first stripping outlet, and a second stripping return end in fluid communication with the regeneration inlet.
  54. 54. The system of claim 51, further comprising:
    a second stripping unit having a second stripping inlet in fluid communication with the second end of the second reaction unit and a second stripping outlet in fluid communication with the regenerator inlet.
  55. 55. A method for forming olefins in a methanol to olefin reactor system, comprising:
    contacting in a first reaction unit a first oxygenate with a first catalyst under conditions effective to convert at least a portion of the first oxygenate to a first olefin and at least partially deactivating the first catalyst to form a deactivated first catalyst;
    contacting in a second reaction unit a second oxygenate with a second catalyst under conditions effective to convert at least a portion of the second oxygenate to a second olefin and at least partially deactivating the second catalyst to form a deactivated second catalyst;
    directing the deactivated first catalyst and deactivated second catalyst to a regeneration unit;
    regenerating the deactivated first catalyst and the deactivated second catalyst to form regenerated catalysts;
    directing a first portion of the regenerated catalysts to the first reaction unit; and
    directing a second portion of the regenerated catalysts to the second reaction unit.
  56. 56. The method of claim 55, further comprising:
    contacting the deactivated first catalyst with a first stripping medium in a first stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated first catalyst.
  57. 57. The method of claim 56, further comprising:
    contacting the deactivated second catalyst with a second stripping medium in a second stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated second catalyst.
  58. 58. The method of claim 56, further comprising:
    contacting the deactivated second catalyst with the first stripping medium in the first stripping unit under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated second catalyst.
  59. 59. The method of claim 56, wherein the first stripping medium is selected from the group consisting of steam, nitrogen, helium, argon, methane, CO2, CO, hydrogen, and mixtures thereof.
  60. 60. The method of claim 57, wherein the first stripping medium is selected from the group consisting of steam, nitrogen, helium, argon, methane, CO2, CO, hydrogen, and mixtures thereof.
  61. 61. The method of claim 58, wherein the first stripping medium is selected from the group consisting of steam, nitrogen, helium, argon, methane, CO2, CO, hydrogen, and mixtures thereof.
  62. 62. The method of claim 55, wherein the contacting in the first reaction unit occurs in a plurality of riser reactors.
  63. 63. The method of claim 62, wherein the contacting in the second reaction unit occurs in a plurality of riser reactors.
  64. 64. A hydrocarbon conversion system, comprising:
    first and second pluralities of riser reactors, each of the riser reactors having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed and a second end through which the catalyst can exit the riser reactor;
    first and second catalyst retention zones provided to contain catalyst which can be fed to the first and second plurality of riser reactors, respectively;
    first and second separation zones into which the second ends of the first and second pluralities of riser reactors extend, respectively, the separation zones being provided to separate the catalyst from products of a reaction conducted in the first and second pluralities of riser reactors;
    first and second catalyst returns in fluid communication with the first and second separation zones, respectively, and the first and second catalyst retention zones, respectively;
    a regenerator for regenerating the catalyst;
    first and second catalyst outlet lines, each of the outlet lines having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed from the first and second pluralities of riser reactors, respectively, and a second end through which the catalyst can enter the regenerator; and
    first and second catalyst return lines, each of the return lines having a first end into which a catalyst can be fed from the regenerator and a second end through which the catalyst can enter the first and second pluralities of riser reactors, respectively.
  65. 65. The system of claim 64, wherein the first catalyst outlet line includes a first stripping unit for stripping the catalyst with a first stripping medium.
  66. 66. The system of claim 65, wherein the second catalyst outlet line includes a second stripping unit for stripping the catalyst with a second stripping medium.
  67. 67. The system of claim 65, wherein the second catalyst outlet line includes the first stripping unit for stripping the catalyst with the first stripping medium.
  68. 68. A catalyst regenerator system, comprising:
    a regeneration zone for contacting an at least partially deactivated catalyst with a regeneration medium under conditions effective to form a regenerated catalyst;
    a plurality of catalyst inlets for receiving the at least partially deactivated catalyst from a plurality of reactor units; and
    a plurality of catalyst outlets for delivering the regenerated catalyst to the plurality of reactor units.
  69. 69. The catalyst regenerator system of claim 68, wherein at least one of the reactor units comprises a plurality of riser reactors.
  70. 70. The catalyst regenerator system of claim 69, wherein two or more of the reactor units comprise a plurality of riser reactors.
  71. 71. The catalyst regenerator system of claim 70, wherein three or more of the reactor units comprise a plurality of riser reactors.
  72. 72. The catalyst regenerator system of claim 71, wherein four or more of the reactor units comprise a plurality of riser reactors.
  73. 73. The catalyst regenerator system of claim 68, further comprising:
    a stripping zone for contacting the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a stripping medium under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated catalyst.
  74. 74. The catalyst regenerator system of claim 68, further comprising:
    a plurality of stripping zones for contacting the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a stripping medium under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated catalyst.
  75. 75. A method for regenerating catalyst, comprising:
    receiving an at least partially deactivated catalyst from a plurality of multiple riser reaction units;
    heating the catalyst under conditions effective to convert the at least partially deactivated catalyst to a regenerated catalyst; and
    directing the regenerated catalyst to the plurality of multiple riser reaction units.
  76. 76. The method of claim 75, further comprising:
    contacting the at least partially deactivated catalyst with a stripping medium under conditions effective to remove interstitial hydrocarbons from the deactivated catalyst.
  77. 77. A hydrocarbon conversion system, comprising:
    a plurality of reaction units, each unit comprising a plurality of riser reactors; and
    at least one regeneration unit coupled to the reaction units;
    wherein the number of reaction units is greater than the number of regeneration units.
  78. 78. The hydrocarbon conversion system of claim 77, further comprising:
    at least one stripping unit coupled to the reaction units.
  79. 79. The hydrocarbon conversion system of claim 78, wherein the number of reaction units is greater than the number of stripping units.
US10260263 2002-09-30 2002-09-30 Method and system for regenerating catalyst from a plurality of hydrocarbon conversion apparatuses Abandoned US20040064007A1 (en)

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