Utilization of red mud as catalyst in conversion of waste oil and waste plastics to fuel
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The aim of this study was to investigate the possibilities of using a by-product (red mud) from alumina production as a catalyst for recovery of waste. The conversion of waste mineral oil (WMO) and waste mineral oil/municipal waste plastic (WMO/MWP) blends over red mud (RM), a commercial hydrocracking catalyst (silica–alumina), and a commercial hydrotreating catalyst (Ni–Mo/alumina) to fuel has been studied. The effect of the catalyst and the temperature on the product distribution (gas, liquid, and wax) and the properties of liquid products were investigated. In the case of hydrotreatment of WMO, the liquids obtained over RM at both 400° and 425°C had larger amounts of low-boiling hydrocarbons than that of thermal or catalytic treatment with hydrotreating catalyst. Gas chromatography and nuclear magnetic resonance analysis of the liquid products showed that RM had hydrogenation and cracking activity in hydrotreatment of WMO. In coprocessing of WMO with municipal waste plastics, temperature had an important effect as well as the amount of MWP in the blend and the catalyst type. The hydrocracking at 400°C produced no liquid product. In hydrocracking at 425°C, the product distribution varied with catalyst type and MWP amount. The commercial hydrocracking catalyst had more cracking ability in the conversion of WMO/MWP to liquid and gas fuel than RM. In the case of hydrocracking over RM, the largest amount of liquid having satisfactory quality was obtained only from the blend containing 20% MWP.
Key wordsWaste mineral oil Waste plastics Red mud Hydrocracking Recycling
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