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 Tech of the Week

Methods of solidifying low-boiling-point hydrocarbon and its handling and regeneration

Japan Industrial Technology Association

Methods for solidifying low-boiling point hydrocarbon

In this technology, methods of solidifying low-boiling-point hydrocarbon and gaseous hydrocarbons are proposed. After solidification of these hydrocarbons, they may be handled as safe solids during storage and transportation, while the original hydrocarbons can be taken out from the solid when used. Since solidified materials of hydrocarbons are repeatedly usable, chemically relatively stable, safe, and harmless, their use in a large amount is possible, and they are less dangerous even if they are discharged to the outside of the storage system. Methods of their handling and regeneration are also proposed in this technology.

According to the method of the present technology, a wide variety of gaseous hydrocarbons and highly volatile liquid hydrocarbons, such as propane, isobutene, and n-butane, can be safely and easily solidified by utilization of the intermolecular van der Waals force between the hydrocarbons and the metal salt of a carboxylic acid (and high-boiling-point hydrocarbons, if necessary). In this way, they can be converted, without using any harmful reagent, into solidified form in order to be safely stored and transported.

According to the present technology, since gaseous hydrocarbons or highly volatile liquid hydrocarbons can be handled in the form of solid during storage and transportation, accidents and environmental pollution, such as leakage and ignition of the organic compounds, can be effectively prevented and transportation costs can also be reduced.

Further, the original hydrocarbons can be easily obtained, by releasing their solidified product under atmospheric pressure at room temperature, or by heating it if necessary, and the metal salt of a carboxylic acid can also be repeatedly used. The present method can also be practiced even in an industrial scale.

The uniqueness of the technology consists of various methods for low-boiling-point and gaseous hydrocarbons:

  • Low-boiling-point hydrocarbons such as N-butane, Isobutene, N-pentane, Branched pentane, Ethylene, Acetylene, Propylene, Butene: Method for solidifying a low-boiling-point hydrocarbon; method of handling a low-boiling-point hydrocarbon; method of regenerating a low-boiling-point hydrocarbon.
  • Gaseous hydrocarbons such as Propane, N-butane, Isobutane, Acetylene, Propylene, Butene: Method of solidifying a gaseous hydrocarbon, method of handling a gaseous hydrocarbon; method of regenerating a gaseous hydrocarbon.

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