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ROMEO Report Summary

Project ID: 680395
Funded under: H2020-EU.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - ROMEO (Reactor optimisation by membrane enhanced operation)

Reporting period: 2015-09-14 to 2017-03-13

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

"ROMEO is a European Research and Innovation Project funded by the European Commission. It is developing a new reactor concept using homogeneous catalysis and membrane technology to carry out chemical synthesis and downstream processing in a single step. Process intensification for catalytic-driven and eco-friendly reaction systems will be brought to a new level thanks to this two-in-one reactor. ROMEO’s reactor will improve efficiency and long-term sustainability for the process industry that is highly dependent on energy, raw materials and water resources.
Processes for bulk chemicals and bio-energy applications have been chosen to demonstrate the efficiency of ROMEO’s technology in a near industrial environment. A demo plant for hydroformylation will be built. This facility will convert olefins and syngas to aldehydes. These molecules are used as precursors for plasticizer alcohols. A demo plant for water-gas shift reaction will be built. This demo plant will use CO or CO-containing syngas derived from biomass. If successful, the ROMEO researchers will have found a way of generating hydrogen from biogenic waste materials, for example wood waste.
ROMEO’s reactor includes bundles of hollow-fiber tubes and a homogenous catalyst being fixed onto a membrane. Chemical synthesis and processing are carried out in a single step thanks to the membrane. In this ""two-in-one"" reactor, the product is continuously removed from the reaction mixture as soon as it is formed.
ROMEO intends to get detailed understanding of the processes involved in its new reactor, from nanoscale (catalyst phase, membrane, transport across and inside the membrane) to macro-scale (e.g. heat and mass flow, industrial process design). The new know-how will be used to develop a flexible reactor design method: a detailed understanding of the different components will allow the tool-box to be flexible and tailored for a wide range of applications."

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

WP 1 Co-ordination of participation on Telco’s and project progress meetings.
WP 2 Determination of reaction conditions for the membrane and the purity requirements of the product. Discussion of available membrane systems and their applicability under the given reaction conditions.
Re-evaluation of the first separation concept (separation of Hydrogen) and set-up of new separation concept to produce two valuable products CO2 (in the first step) and Hydrogen (in a second step).
WP 3 Determination of support structure for membrane modules.
WP 4 Determination of reaction conditions, experimental set-up and analytical set-up. Evaluation of first results from catalyst tests on support structure.
WP 5 Discussion of model set-up, determination of boundary conditions and support of establishing a reaction and diffusion model.
WP 6 Basic principles and information for a life time cycle assessment for the catalyst/membrane module have been collected and a first assessment structure has been set-up.
WP 7 Requirements on reactor module and feed conditions have been specified.
WP 8 Preparation of home page, several project newsletters, video etc. Preparation of a 2- day workshop on membrane reactor technology fo process intensification jointly with 4 other EU funded projects.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

ROMEO project is well on track. Any more specific information is not possible at this time due to IPR considerations.

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