Steam methane reforming (SMR) for hydrogen production with carbon capture from pressure swing adsorption (PSA) tail gas using cryogenic membrane separation

Authors: Janssen, J.L.L.C.C.

Steam methane reforming (SMR) is a method that can be used for producing hydrogen from natural gas. This is achieved in a processing device called a reformer, which reacts steam at high temperature with the gas. SMR uses the following endothermic reaction:

CH4 + H2O ⇌ CO + 3H2.

The reaction is carried out at an activation energy of 206 kJ/mol and temperatures of 500-900 degrees Celsius. In this SMR plant, a COGEN plant is running to export a relatively small fraction of the energy involved to the electricity grid. This represents a technology with high CAPEX/low OPEX. The CO2 is captured from the pressure swing adsorption (PSA) tail gas using low temperature and cryogenic membrane separation technology.