CONCEPTUAL DESIGN STUDY OF DEMULSIFICATION OF FUEL EMULSIONS BY A COALESCENCE PROCESS
Final rept. Oct 1967-Oct 1968
ESSO RESEARCH AND ENGINEERING CO LINDEN NJ GOVERNMENT RESEARCH LAB
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It is desirable to have a demulsification process so that fuel recovered from safety fuel emulsions could then be used in devices or vehicles not qualified for emulsion fuel. The technical feasibility of all three essential steps was demonstrated Breakdown of emulsion Coalescence of unbroken emulsion and the Separation of unbroken emulsion from the fuel. In this study, stainless-steel wool packing or screens were used for the critical steps of breaking and coalescing. Depending on the emulsions, 79 to 92 breakdown by weight was achieved. This performance was obtained by passing 1.4 gpm of the emulsions through a small tube containing the steel wool. The most important parameter determining the extent of breakdown was found to be the energy dissipated per unit volume of emulsion. The best breakdowns were obtained at the upper limit of energy dissipation of the equipment used. If this energy is increased either by operating at pressures greater than 240 psi or by using a recirculating system, the extent of emulsion breakdown should be increased. Continuous separation of broken emulsion was demonstrated. The resulting JP-4 met the military specifications with the exception of dissolved surfactant, which conventional testing procedures classified as gum. Although the surfactant was removed by adsorption on charcoal, it is questionable whether it represents a significant debit.