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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2015, Article ID 439382, 15 pages
Research Article

Simulation of Binary CO2/CH4 Mixture Breakthrough Profiles in MIL-53 (Al)

1Institut de Recherche sur l’Hydrogène, Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, P.O. Box 500, Trois-Rivières, QC, Canada G9A 5H7
2Gas Processing Center, College of Engineering, Qatar University, P.O. Box 2713, Doha, Qatar

Received 17 July 2015; Revised 29 October 2015; Accepted 1 November 2015

Academic Editor: Jin-Ho Choy

Copyright © 2015 Luis Fernando Gomez et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


MIL-53 (Al) aluminum terephthalate, a commercial metal-organic framework, has been studied as a potential candidate for pressure swing adsorption separation of CO2/CH4 binary mixtures. Pure gas isotherms of CH4 and CO2 measured over 0–6 MPa and at room temperature are fitted with the Dubinin-Astakhov (D-A) model. The D-A model parameters are used in the Doong-Yang Multicomponent adsorption model to predict the binary mixture isotherms. A one-dimensional multicomponent adsorption breakthrough model is then used to perform a parametric study of the effect of adsorbent particle diameter, inlet pressures, feed flow rates, and feed compositions on the breakthrough performance. Commercial MIL-53 with a particle diameter of 20 μm renders high tortuous flow; therefore it is less effective for separation. More effective separation can be achieved if MIL-53 monoliths of diameters above 200 μm are used. Faster separation is possible by increasing the feed pressure or if the starting compositions are richer in CO2. More CH4 is produced per cycle at higher feed pressures, but the shortened time at higher pressures can result in the reduction of the CH4 purity.