Kinetic study of esterification over structured ZSM-5-coated catalysts based on fluid flow situations in macrocellular foam materials
The kinetics on structured catalysts is very important for the design and application of catalytic distillation processes. While the kinetic studies in the previous literatures were focused on the intrinsic kinetics using batch reactors that had eliminated the fluid flow situations, this work successfully utilized SiC foam materials to develop a structured catalyst with a ZSM-5 zeolite coating, and the kinetics were characterized by the synthesis of n-amyl acetate. A comparative study on the effect of the temperature (378.15–403.15 K) and flow rate (10.77–30.91 L h−1) revealed that the kinetics exhibited a strong fluid flow characteristic (e.g., Re number) dependence, and the rate of liquid renewal may be the cause of the reaction process over the structured catalyst. The reaction kinetics was modeled and regressed as a pseudo homogeneous model for both structured and particulate catalysts, and the model showed good agreement with experiments. The obtained models can be used for the analysis and guidance of catalytic distillation processes with structured catalytic packing.