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Foaming of industrial lean Methyldietanolamine solvents and its reclamation using bio-polymer adsorbents


Foaming is one of the major operating problems in natural gas sweetening alkanolamine plants. The lean methyldiethanolamine (MDEA) samples collected at different times from GASCO (Habshan, Abu Dhabi) sites were analyzed analytically and laboratory foaming studies were carried out to understand the root cause of foaming. Finally, the work aimed to investigate the effect of foam reduction after removal of contaminants such as total organic acid anions and heavy metal ions (chromium and iron) from lean MDEA solutions using bio-polymeric adsorbents. The adsorbents were characterized using SEM and FTIR analysis. In both batch and column studies bio-polymeric adsorbent outperform currently used carbon used by GASCO. The foaming studies after removal of contaminants justified the use of new adsorbents in reclaiming lean MDEA solutions in the plant.