World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Partial oxidation

Article Id: WHEBN0010178335
Reproduction Date:

Title: Partial oxidation  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Small stationary reformer, PROX, Pox, Methanol reformer, Hydrogen production
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Partial oxidation

Partial oxidation (POX) is a type of chemical reaction. It occurs when a substoichiometric fuel-air mixture is partially combusted in a reformer, creating a hydrogen-rich syngas which can then be put to further use, for example in a fuel cell. A distinction is made between thermal partial oxidation (TPOX) and catalytic partial oxidation (CPOX).


Partial oxidation is a technically mature process in which natural gas or a heavy hydrocarbon fuel (heating oil) is mixed with a limited amount of oxygen in an exothermic process.

  • General reaction equation (without catalyst, TPOX): \mathrm{C_nH_m + \frac{2n+m}{4} \ O_2 \rightarrow n \ CO + \frac{m}{2} \ H_2O}[1]
  • General reaction equation (with catalyst, CPOX): \mathrm{C_nH_m + \frac{n}{2} \ O_2 \rightarrow n \ CO + \frac{m}{2} \ H_2}
  • Possible reaction equation (heating oil): \mathrm{C_{12}H_{24} + 6 \ O_2 \rightarrow 12 \ CO + 12 \ H_2}
  • Possible reaction equation (coal): \mathrm{C_{24}H_{12} + 12 \ O_2 \rightarrow 24 \ CO + 6 \ H_2}

The formulas given for coal and heating oil show only a typical representative of these highly complex mixtures. Water is added to the process for getting both the extreme temperatures as well as extra control on the formation of soot.


TPOX (thermal partial oxidation) reactions, which are dependent on the air-fuel ratio, proceed at temperatures of 1200°C and above.


In CPOX (catalytic partial oxidation) the use of a catalyst reduces the required temperature to around 800°C – 900°C.

The choice of reforming technique depends on the sulfur content of the fuel being used. CPOX can be employed if the sulfur content is below 50 ppm. A higher sulfur content can poison the catalyst, so the TPOX procedure is used for such fuels. However, recent research shows that CPOX is possible with sulfur contents up to 400ppm.[2]


1926 – Vandeveer and Parr at the University of Illinois used oxygen to replace air.[3]

See also


  1. ^ Rostrup-Nielsen, "Syngas in perspective", Catalysis Today 71 (2002), pp. 243-247.
  2. ^ Electricity from wood through the combination of gasification and solid oxide fuel cells, Ph.D. Thesis by Florian Nagel, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, 2008
  3. ^ , Frank G. Kerry, p. 230Industrial Gas Handbook.


This article incorporates information from
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.