ChBE Seminar Series: Jae W. Lee

Tuesday, February 26, 2008
11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Room 2110, Chemical & Nuclear Engineering Bldg.
Professor Kyu Yong Choi
(301) 405-1907

The Role of Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate (SDS) in Accelerating Gas Hydrate Formation

Presented by Jae W. Lee
Department of Chemical Engineering
Grove School of Engineering
City College of New York

Gas hydrates are one group of clathrates consisting of host water and small guest molecules such as methane, ethane, propane, CO2, etc. The presence of high-pressure gas induces a three-dimensional network of hydrogen-bonded water cages. Humphry Davy first discovered gas hydrates in 1810. In the mid 1930s the importance of gas hydrates was emphasized after Hammerschmidt discovered that gas hydrates were responsible for plugging natural gas process and transportation lines. For a long time, research in the petroleum industry had been focused on avoiding the formation of gas hydrates. Gas hydrates can play an important role in CO2 separation/sequestration and can also be used for gas storage purposes. But to apply gas hydrate techniques to industrial processes, we have to overcome the two barriers: (1) Gas hydrates are usually formed at the interface between the bulk gas and water phases. Once the solid hydrates cover the interface, gas hydrate formation decreases significantly because the hydrate layer becomes a barrier for mass transfer, and thus hydrate conversion is very low. (2) The rate of gas hydrate formation is very slow (induction time: several days). To overcome these obstacles, people have employed a small amount of surfactants and the gas hydrate formation was accelerated several hundred times faster than water/gas systems. This talk will mainly concern the kinetic mechanism of methane hydrate formation when SDS is involved and will show that the SDS does not form micelles using an in-situ measurement of SDS concentrations. The role of SDS in accelerating methane hydrate nucleation and growth will be understood by the SDS adsorption to hydrate particle surfaces and the change of hydrate crystal morphology.

About the Speaker

Education: B.S. (1990) & M.S. (1992) Chemical Engineering, Seoul National University. Ph.D. 2000 Carnegie Mellon University (Advisor: Prof. Arthur W. Westerberg)

Appointments: Research Engineer, 1992-1997, S-Oil Refining Co. Ltd. Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellow, 2000-2001, RWTH Aachen. 2001-2005: Assistant Professor at the City College of New York (CCNY) January 2006-current: Associate Professor at CCNY.

Awards and Honors: Alumni Award for Graduation with the Highest Honor (School of Engineering, SNU, 1990). AIChE Journal Paper of the Month (June 2000). Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship (2000-2001). Omega Chi Epsilon Chapter Service Award (2006).

Research Areas: H2 Hydrate Clathrates, Natural Gas Hydrates, Flow Assurance. CO2 Separation and Sequestration via Gas Hydrates, Methane Hydrate Sediments, Green Engineering via Reactive Separation.

Audience: Graduate  Faculty  Post-Docs 


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