Vortex Tube Cryogenic & Pressurized Liquid Vaporization

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LPG is a valuable fuel source that is typically transported and stored as a liquid that must be vaporized to be utilized. Although smaller volume applications can be served from tank boil-off, higher …

LPG is a valuable fuel source that is typically transported and stored as a liquid that must be vaporized to be utilized. Although smaller volume applications can be served from tank boil-off, higher volume applications such as commercial or industrial utilization require a heat source to achieve adequate rates of vaporization. The cost of fuel or energy to provide the heat adds significantly to the delivered cost of LPG vapor. By using a vortex tube it is possible to enhance LPG vaporization and reduce the consumption of energy for vaporization. This document presents the basic design for vortex LPG vaporization.

Vortex tube can provide a reduction (eg 10-15% depending on ambient air temperature) in fuel required for LPG vaporization is technically achievable. Vortex LPG vaporization installation is easily retrofit for most LPG vaporization installations. Basically a skid with the vortex pressure reducer and ambient air heat exchanger can be placed adjacent to existing LPG vaporization facilities and connected to existing piping. Compact, simple and energy efficient the installation should provide years of maintenance free and financially viable service.

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  • 1. Vortex Tube Cryogenic & Pressurized Liquid Vaporization An application of the innovative technology of Prepared by: Gasficient Consulting Services
  • 2. Copyright 2104 - Gasficient Consulting Services 2 Cryogenic & Pressurized Liquids • Cryogenic Liquids - stored at very low temperatures so remain liquid at low pressure (eg LNG, CO2, N2, O2) • Pressurized Liquids - stored at ambient air temperature but under pressure so remain liquid (eg Propane, Butane, LPG)
  • 3. Copyright 2104 - Gasficient Consulting Services 3 Vaporization of Cryogenic & Pressurized Liquids • Cryogenic & Pressurized liquids require heat to gasify • Where in-tank vaporization does not produce sufficiently rapid vaporization liquid is drawn off and heated outside the tank. • Often a heat source is used to warm the liquid and to overcome the latent heat of vaporization
  • 4. Copyright 2104 - Gasficient Consulting Services 4 LPG Liquid Vaporization Outside Tank
  • 5. Copyright 2104 - Gasficient Consulting Services 5 Vortex Tube Liquid Vaporization (LPG) • Vortex tube reduces vaporized LPG pressure and provides mass and energy separation resulting in hot and cold stream outlet from the vortex pressure reducer. • Vortex tube pre-heats the liquid LPG upstream of the LPG vaporizer thus reducing the fuel consumption of the conventional vaporizer • The air source heat exchanger warms the vortex cold fraction to compensate for the heat transferred to the liquid LPG
  • 6. Copyright 2104 - Gasficient Consulting Services 6 Process Description • LPG is vaporized at the storage pressure in the tank (eg 6 bar) • Pressure reduction (eg to 1 barg) required for distribution or utilization • Vortex pressure reducer with an integral heat exchange chamber that is warmed due to the mass and energy separation • Liquid LPG is pre-heated before it enters the LPG vaporizer. • LPG vapor cold fraction is warmed in the ambient air heat exchanger thus ensuring the vaporized LPG remains in vapor form
  • 7. Copyright 2104 - Gasficient Consulting Services 7 LPG Vaporization
  • 8. Copyright 2104 - Gasficient Consulting Services 8 Benefits • Enhance LPG vaporization to reduce the amount of energy, greenhouse gas emissions and the expense of operation • Vortex tube can provide a reduction (eg 10-15% depending on ambient air temperature) in fuel required for LPG vaporization
  • 9. Copyright 2104 - Gasficient Consulting Services 9 Conclusion • Discussion