Dr. David Bell
Aromatics are an important part of many chemical engineering processes around the world and have a large variety of commercial uses. In the future it is projected there will be a shortage of oil resources causing many research institutions to work actively to develop new techniques for producing aromatics. With the low cost of natural gas, converting methanol to aromatics has become an attractive option. Methanol is readily available due to massive natural gas reserves underground and it is relatively inexpensive. For my senior engineering design project I worked with a team to design a plant that converts methanol to aromatics using a ZSM5 zeolite catalyst impregnated with silver ions. Our design included a working simulation of the plant, an economic analysis of the plants profitability, and sensitivity analyses of the plant’s resilience to changing market conditions. I will be presenting my contributions to this project for my senior honors project. This will include the business opportunity for the plant and the product market, modeling a portion of the plant, estimating equipment costs for the unit operations of the plant, a production cost estimate, and an overall analysis of the plant’s value.
Ward, Tess; Weishaar, Jonathan; Wilkison, Brady; and Ruskowsky, Gabrianna, "Methanol to Aromatics" (2016). Honors Theses AY 15/16. 21.