|Title of Invention||
"A PROCESS FOR SELECTIVE CATALYTIC CRACKING OF NAPHTHA TO ETHHYLENE AND PROPYLENE"
|Abstract||A process is disclosed for enhancing the production of light olefins using a catalyst with small pores. The catalyst comprises a molecular sieve having 10 membered rings with channels for limited length. The molecular sieve has a high silica to alumina ratio and has pores sized to limit production of aromatics in the cracking process.|
|Full Text||BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
 The present invention relates to a process for the production of light olefins from a naphtha feed stream. This invention also relates to an improved zeolite used in the process for producing light olefins.
 Ethylene and propylene, light olefin hydrocarbons with two or three carbon atoms per molecule, respectively, are important chemicals for use in the production of other useful materials, such as polyethylene and polypropylene. Polyethylene and polypropylene are two of the most common plastics found in use today and have a wide variety of uses for both as a material fabrication and as a material for packaging. Other uses for ethylene and propylene include the production of vinyl chloride, ethylene oxide, ethylbenzene and alcohol. Steam cracking or pyrolysis of hydrocarbons produces essentially all of the ethylene and propylene. Hydrocarbons used as feedstock for light olefin production include natural gas, petroleum liquids, and carbonaceous materials including coal, recycled plastics or any organic material.  Methods are known for increasing the conversion of portions of the products of the ethylene production from a zeolitic cracking process to produce more ethylene and propylene by a disproportionation or metathesis of olefins. Such processes are disclosed in U.S. Pat. Nos. 5,026,935 and 5,026,936 wherein a metathesis reaction step is employed in combination with a catalytic cracking step to produce more ethylene and propylene by the metathesis of C4 and heavier molecules. The catalytic cracking step employs a zeolitic catalyst to convert a hydrocarbon stream having 4 or more carbon atoms per molecule to produce olefins having fewer carbon atoms per molecule. The hydrocarbon feedstream to the zeolitic catalyst typically contains a mixture of 40 to 95 wt-% paraffins having 4 or more carbon atoms per molecule and 5 to 60 wt-% olefins having 4 or more carbon atoms per molecule. In U.S. Pat. No. 5,043,522, it is disclosed that the preferred catalyst for such a zeolitic cracking process is an acid zeolite, examples includes several of the ZSM-type zeolites or the borosilicates. Of the ZSM-type zeolites, ZSM-5 was preferred. It was disclosed that other zeolites containing materials which could be used in the cracking process to produce ethylene and propylene included zeolite A, zeolite X, zeolite Y, zeolite ZK-5, zeolite ZK-4, synthetic mordenite, dealuminized mordenite, as well as naturally occurring zeolites including chabazite, faujasite, mordenite, and the like. Zeolites which were ion-exchanged to
replace alkali metal present in the zeolite were preferred. Preferred cation exchange cations were hydrogen, ammonium, rare earth metals and mixtures thereof.
 European Patent No. 109,059B 1 discloses a process for the conversion of a feedstream containing olefins having 4 to 12 carbon atoms per molecule into propylene by contacting the feedstream with a ZSM-5 or a ZSM-11 zeolite having a silica to alumina atomic ratio less than or equal to 300 at a temperature from 400 to 600°C. The ZSM-5 or ZSM-11 zeolite is exchanged with a hydrogen or an ammonium cation. The reference also discloses that, although the conversion to propylene is enhanced by the recycle of any olefins with less than 4 carbon atoms per molecule, paraffins which do not react tend to build up in the recycle stream. The reference provides an additional oligomerization step wherein the olefins having 4 carbon atoms are oligomerized to facilitate the removal of paraffins such as butane and particularly isobutane which are difficult to separate from C4 olefins by conventional fractionation. In a related European Patent 109060B1, a process is disclosed for the conversion of butenes to propylene. The process comprises contacting butenes with a zeolitic compound selected from the group consisting of silicalites, boralites, chromosilicates and those zeolites ZSM-5 and ZSM-11 in which the mole ratio of silica to alumina is greater than or equal to 350. The conversion is carried out at a temperature from 500 to 600°C. and at a space velocity of from 5 to 200 kg/hr of butenes per kg of pure zeolitic compound. The European Patent 109060B1 discloses the use of silicalite-1 in an ion-exchanged, impregnated, or co-precipitated form with a modifying element selected from the group consisting of chromium, magnesium, calcium, strontium and barium.
 Generally, the heavier olefins having six or more carbon atoms per molecule which are produced in commercial ethylene plants are useful for the production of aromatic hydrocarbons. Portions of the olefin product include olefins with four carbon atoms per molecule. This portion includes both mono-olefins and di-olefins and some paraffins, including butane and iso-butane. Because the portion with four carbon atoms per molecule is generally less valuable and requires significant processing to separate di-olefins from the mono-olefins, processes are sought to improve the utilization of this portion of the ethylene plant product and enhancing the overall yield of ethylene and propylene.
 Therefore, new methods are desired for increasing yields from existing sources of hydrocarbons.
BRIEF SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
 The present invention is a process for catalytic cracking of naphtha to ethylene and propylene. In one embodiment, the process comprises contacting a naphtha feedstock under reaction conditions with a catalyst comprising a molecular sieve having substantially non-intersecting 10 membered ring channels with a dimension in the range from 0.1 micrometers to 0.3 micrometers in the channel direction. The 10 membered ring channels form elliptical pores with a pore index from 22 A2 to 30 A2. The catalyst further comprises a composition with a silicon to aluminum ratio from 20 to 200.
 In another embodiment, the invention is a process for catalytic cracking of naphtha to ethylene and propylene comprising contacting a layered catalyst with a naphtha feedstock. The layered catalyst is a molecular sieve with an inner structure having 8 or 10 membered rings, and an outer structure having 10 membered rings.
 In another embodiment, the invention is a zeolite for selectively producing ethylene and propylene. The zeolite is a crystal having substantially non-intersecting channels where the crystal has a dimension between 0.1 micrometers and 0.3 micrometers along the direction of the channels. The channels are elliptically shaped pores with a pore index from 22 A2 to 30 A2. The zeolite has a silicon to aluminum ratio from between 20 and 200 and is characterized by hydrothermal stability up to 700°C.
 In another embodiment, the zeolite further comprises a material wherein there is a gradient of aluminum in the pores. The aluminum has a decreasing concentration in the direction from the pore mouth to the pore interior.
 Other objects, advantages and applications of the present invention will become apparent to those skilled in the art after a detailed description of the invention.
 Figure 1 is a schematic diagram of an idealized pore in a zeolite crystal of the present invention;
 Figure 2 is a scanning electron micrograph of a ferrierite zeolite formed with a pyridine template;
 Figure 3 is a scanning electron micrograph of a ferrierite zeolite formed with a pyrrolidine template;
 Figure 4 is a scanning electron micrograph of a conventionally produced ZSM-22 zeolite;
 Figure 5 is a scanning electron micrograph of a microcrystalline produced ZSM-22
 Figure 6 is an NMR scan of a high ratio ferrierite zeolite before and after
subjecting the zeolite to severe steaming procedure;
 Figure 7 is a comparison plot for three zeolites of propylene selectivity vs.
 Figure 8 is a comparison plot for three zeolites of aromatics selectivity vs.
 Figure 9 is a comparison plot for three zeolites of ethylene selectivity vs.
 Figure 10 is a plot showing the increased selectivity and conversion of ethylene
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION
 A necessary feature of the process of this invention's first embodiment is the catalyst. The catalyst used is a molecular sieve having pores made of 10 membered rings and having channels with a length between 0.1 micrometers to 0.3 micrometers. Additionally, the catalyst has a specifically distributed acid site density in the pores and can be characterized by a silicon to aluminum (Si:Al) atomic ratio from 20 to 200. This is equivalent to a silica to alumina (SiO2:Al2O3) ratio from 40 to 400. It is important to prevent reaction of ethylene and propylene to side products, which requires a sufficiently low density of acid sites within the active region of the molecular sieve pores. By using a molecular sieve with a relatively high silica:alumina ratio the acid sites are sufficiently spaced.
 Optimal catalytic cracking of naphtha to produce ethylene and propylene requires zeolites having pores of sufficient size to admit molecules from the naphtha feed while not too large to promote the formation of aromatics or hydrogen transfer reactions with large transition states. Without being bound by any theory, it is believed that the pores have a generally elliptical shape and have a pore index from 22 A2 to 30 A2 allowing access of naphtha molecules into the pores. The pore index as used herein is defined as the product of the two principal diameters of a pore having an elliptically shaped cross-section. The elliptical pores can also be circular wherein the pore index is equal to the square of the diameter of a circular pore.
 Examples of zeolites and their pore indexes are listed in Table 1, as found in the Atlas of Zeolite Framework Types published by the International Zeolite Association. The Atlas of Zeolite Framework Types is published on the Internet at (visited Aug. 22,2002)
 A preferred zeolite is a ferrierite. Ferrierite is a two-dimensional channel zeolite structure with 8 and 10 member ring channels. The 10 member channels have an approximately ellipsoid cross section with two diameters defining the ellipsoid of 5.4A and 4.2A. The ferrierite 10 member rings have substantially non-intersecting channels.
 The synthesis of zeolites of the present invention can be formed by hydrothermal crystallization from a reaction mixture containing the desired amounts of silica and alumina and a templating agent. Zeolitic synthesis processes are well known in the art.
 An advantage of this process with these zeolites is control over the propylene to ethylene ratio. This process produces a higher ratio of propylene to ethylene and can achieve a ratio of greater than 0.9. Another advantage to the present invention is operation of the process at lower temperatures. The process is operated at 150°C to 200°C lower than conventional steam cracking processes of temperatures around 850°C resulting in
considerable energy savings and reduction in the cost of equipment of the reactor because of simplification of the metallurgical requirements.
 In a second embodiment, the process comprises contacting a naphtha feedstock at reaction conditions with a catalyst that uses a molecular sieve made of a layered material comprising at least two layers of zeolite. The at least two layers includes at least one inner zeolite layer and at least one outer zeolite layer. The inner zeolite layer has a first structure and includes pores made of 8 membered rings, 10 membered rings, or a mixture of 8 and 10 membered rings. The outer zeolite layer has a second structure and includes pores made of 10 membered rings, wherein the pores of the outer layer overlay the pores of the inner layer.  The inner layer is a zeolite with pores small enough to suppress the formation of aromatics. Examples of such zeolites include, but are not limited to, wenkite, chabazite, dachiardite, erionite, zeolite A, ZK-4, epistilbite, laumontite, wienebeneite, EU-1, UZM-5, UZM-9 and UZM-12. Combinations of zeolites can also be used to form an interior layer, or a plurality of interior layers with one or more of the structures listed. The outer layer is a zeolite with pores large enough to admit the diffusion of naphthenes and isoparaffins that are present in crackable hydrocarbon feedstocks. Examples of such zeolites include, but are not limited to, ferrierite, ZSM-22, ZSM-23, ZSM-50, ZSM-57, ZSM-11, ZSM-5, NU-87 and clinoptilolite. Combinations of zeolites can also be used to form an outer layer, or a plurality of outer layers with one or more of the structures listed.
 The resulting layered catalyst is an improved catalyst relative to each of the individual catalysts used for synthesizing the layered catalyst. The improved catalyst will yield higher amounts of ethylene and propylene from a hydrocarbon feedstock because the larger outer pores allow larger hydrocarbon molecules to get in and to get activated. As the molecules diffuse into the smaller pores, the smaller pores restrict the amount of aromatic formation favoring the conversion to light olefins because of the restrictive pore size in the inner layers.
 The inner layer, or layers, has a dimension from 0.1 micrometers to 5 micrometers, with a preferred dimension of 0.1 micrometers to 0.5 micrometers. This dimension is the thickness of the layers if the layers are grown over an inert core, or the effective diameter of a catalyst particle grown. By effective diameter is meant, for non-spherical shapes, the diameter that the shaped particle would have if it were molded into a sphere. Preferably, the dried shaped particles are substantially spherical in shape.
 The outer layer, or layers, has a dimension from 0.1 micrometers to 1 micrometer, with a preferred dimension from 0.1 micrometers to 0.2 micrometers. The overall dimension of the catalyst particles is preferably in the range of 0.1 micrometers to 5 micrometers with a more preferred range of 0.5 micrometers to 2 micrometers.
 In an alternate embodiment, the layered zeolite has an inert inner core. This embodiment comprises an inert inner core and at least one layer of an aluminum containing zeolite on top of the inert core. An inert core as used herein is any material that is unreactive for the present application, and includes cores made of a material that is not accessible to the hydrocarbons with respect to the materials acidity. The inaccessibility can be due to the lack of pores, pores that are to small to admit the hydrocarbons, or a core that has a layer of an inert and impermeable material between the inner core and the zeolite. This allows for the zeolite to be increased in size while maintaining a high surface to volume ratio of the active catalyst region. This embodiment also provides for short active regions accessible to naphtha molecules and limiting the residence times of naphtha molecules in catalytically active regions. This embodiment provides larger crystals that are equivalent to smaller or very thin crystals of zeolite as regards the catalytic performance, such as when the use of larger crystals is necessary and smaller crystals are not practical for hydrocarbon cracking processes. This embodiment, as it can provide a thin reaction zone, can produce higher yields of ethylene and propylene while limiting the amount of ethylene and propylene further reacting to other undesired products, and also helps to overcome problems associated with limitations associated with intraparticle diffusion.
 An optional aspect of the process is using a zeolite with an aluminum concentration decreasing as one moves down a pore from the mouth of the pore to the interior of the pore. Figure 1 represents a diagram of a pore for an idealized zeolite crystal of the present invention. The zeolite crystal 10 is made up of a series of substantially non-intersecting pores 12. A pore 12 has a pore mouth 16 defined by the edge 14 of the pore 12. The zeolite crystal 10 as used with the present invention has a relatively high aluminum concentration region 18 near the pore mouth 16 with a decreasing aluminum concentration as one moves down the pore 12 away from the pore mouth 16. The crystal 10 has an interior pore region 20 which has a relatively low aluminum concentration. The relatively high and low aluminum concentrations are relative to the overall average aluminum concentration in the zeolite pores 12 framework. The zeolite may advantageously include a distribution of
aluminum concentration within the pore 12. The preferred distribution is a gradient with a relatively high alumina concentration near the pore mouth and a lower concentration in the pore interior. The preferred gradient is for the relatively high aluminum concentration to be at least 1.5 times as great as the average aluminum concentration in the pores 12.
 Another optional aspect of this process is using a zeolite wherein the crystal 10, as shown in Figure 1, has an exterior surface 22, and the exterior surface 22 has acid sites that are neutralized producing an exterior surface 22 that is unreactive when exposed to the naphtha. This presents a zeolite crystal with a sharp increase in aluminum concentration as one traverses from an external surface to just inside a pore, and the aluminum concentration then decreases as one travels down the pore. By neutralizing the acid sites on the external surface, the reaction for cracking a naphtha molecule is prevented on the surface outside of the pores. This prevents the olefinic molecules generated in the pores of the zeolite from further reacting to produce undesirable products, and limits the production of larger olefins and aromatics that might be produced on external surfaces of the zeolite. The exterior surface 22 may be neutralized in a number of ways. One method of neutralizing the zeolite surface 22 is to coat the surface with a non-reactive material, such as continuing growing the crystal with an aluminum free inert material. It is preferred to have a very thin layer of only a few molecules thickness. An alternate to covering the entire zeolite surface 22 is to use a chemical, such as silane, that will cover the surface aluminum or neutralizing the surface by removing the aluminum on the surface 22. Removal of the aluminum can be accomplished by treating the zeolite with an appropriate chemical such as EDTA (ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid) or AFS (ammonium hexafluorosilicate).
 An embodiment of this invention is a zeolite structure with unique aluminum distribution and crystal dimensions. A zeolite comprising a crystal having substantially non-intersecting channels is grown. The channels are made of 10 membered rings and the crystal size is limited to less than 0.5 micrometers in the direction of the 10 membered ring channels. A preferred crystal dimension is in the range from 0.1 micrometers to 0.3 micrometers.  An aspect of the invention is the residence time of the hydrocarbon to be reacted in the catalyst pores. Using a catalyst with a relatively short channel length of less than 0.3 micrometers limits the residence time of the hydrocarbon in the pores. The desired morphology of the catalyst is for a relatively short channel length of the pores. The preferred pore channel length is from 0.1 micrometers to 0.3 micrometers. The morphology limits the
residence time of hydrocarbons within the pore channels. The morphology can be studied with electron microscopy. Figures 2 and 3 show scanning electron micrographs (SEM) of ferrierite with two different templates. Figure 2 shows a pyridine template which produces a conventional plary morphology of the ferrierite. The pyridine templated ferrierite has a silica to alumina ratio of 61.7. Figure 3 shows a pyrrolidine template of ferrierite producing small crystals. The pyrrolidine templated ferrierite has a silica to alumina ratio of 64.4. From transmission electron microscopy (TEM) the 10 and 8 membered-ring channels of the platy morphology ferrierite are parallel to the plates and consequently are too long. The plates have a thickness of 0.1 to 0.2 micrometers and there are no channels in that direction. Using the pyrrolidine templated ferrierite, smaller crystals are produced with channel lengths in the preferred range. Another zeolite, ZSM-22, is shown in Figures 4 and 5. When ZSM-22 is conventionally produced as shown in Figure 4, a needle like structure is created and the structure has pore channels parallel to the structure's principal axis. The channels are consequently too long. By selection of an alternate template, a microcrystalline ZSM-22 is produced, as shown in Figure 5. The microcrystalline ZSM-22 has channel lengths in the desired range from 0.1 to 0.3 micrometers.
 A preferred zeolite can be found in a modified ferrierite. In ferrierite, the only channels available for bulky reactant molecules in the feed are the 10 membered ring channels. Smaller 8 membered ring channels do not allow access to bulky reactant molecules such as isoalkanes and naphthenes, but do provide access for movement of small product molecules such as ethylene and propylene. The 10 membered ring channels form elliptically shaped pores wherein the elliptical pores have a pore index from 22 A2 to 30 A2. The zeolite is characterized by a silica:alumina ratio from 40 to 400, and further characterized in that the zeolite crystal is hydrothermally stable to 700°C. The hydrothermal stability is important as the process is carried out at a temperature from 550°C to 700°C, with a preferred range from 600°C to 675°C. The process also includes carrying out catalyst regeneration at a temperature of 15°C to 25°C higher that the inlet reaction temperature. A ferrierite zeolite with the desired properties was tested under severe steaming conditions. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) of the zeolite before and after the severe steaming procedure indicated an effective amount of the framework alumina remained intact, as shown in Figure 6.
 Pore diameter can be controlled by the introduction of non-framework species, for example, by cation exchange. Examples of species for use in cation exchange include, but are
not limited to, transition metals, non-framework aluminum, potassium, sodium, magnesium, calcium, strontuim, phosphorus, and mixtures thereof.
 Alternate catalyst embodiments of the present invention are the layered zeolite as described above.
 One method of making these zeolites includes initially growing crystals with an aluminum free material to provide inert inner cores. The inert cores are used as seeds over which an aluminum containing zeolite is grown epitaxially until an outer layer having a desired thickness is achieved. A desired outer layer thickness is in the range from 0.1 micrometers to 0.5 micrometers. The outer surface external to the pores is further processed to neutralize the aluminum on the outer surface. One manner of neutralizing this outer surface is to further grow epitaxially a thin layer of aluminum free material.
 The process of the invention comprises contacting a naphtha feedstream, in gaseous form, with any of the above described catalysts. The contacting of the naphtha with the catalyst occurs, for example, in a fluidized catalytic cracking (FCC) type reactor. The process entails feeding the hot catalyst and the vaporized, preheated naphtha into a reactor vessel, wherein the catalyst mixes with the gas and is entrained with the gas, and the gas-catalyst mixture reacts under operating conditions producing a product gas and used catalyst. The product gas and used catalyst exit the reactor where the used catalyst is disentrained from the product gas, leaving a product gas stream and a catalyst stream. Some of the catalyst is then sent to a regenerator where carbon deposits are substantially removed. The choice of reactor can be any fluidized type of reactor for intimately mixing the naphtha feedstream with the catalyst. Reactors of this type are well known to those skilled in the art
 Alternate feedstocks that are crackable to ethylene and propylene include gas oil, vacuum gas oil, and Fischer-Tropsch wax. Preferably, the feedstock has been processed to remove aromatics. An optional configuration in the present invention includes a hydrocarbon separation unit, for processing the product gas stream. The product gas stream is separated into an ethylene product stream, a propylene product stream, and a plurality of recycle streams. The recycle streams are optionally further separated into an ethane stream, a propane stream, a butane and butene stream, and a non-aromatic naphtha liquids stream. The recycle streams are directed back to the reactor and are optionally, directed into the reactor at a single location, at different locations, or even directed to different reactors arrayed in a parallel configuration.
 The aspect of using different reactors in a parallel configuration allows for varying control over the temperatures and pressures for the different individual reactors. The different reactors allows for different temperatures of the individual reactors, different operating pressures, and different residence times. The use of different reactors, optionally, allows for the use of different modified catalysts for use with different feedstocks. In the option of using different catalysts, different catalyst regeneration units are also used for regenerating individual types of catalysts directed to the different reactors.
 One aspect of the process operating conditions is the temperature at which the reaction is carried out. The reactions can be carried out between a temperature of 550°C to 700°C. A preferred temperature for operating the process is to be in the range from 600°C to 675°C with a more preferred operating temperature of 650°C to 670°C.
 Another aspect of the process is operating the reaction at an elevated pressure. A preferred operating pressure is in the range from 100 kPa (14.5 psia) to 3550 kPa (15 psia). A more preferred operating pressure is from 135 kPa (20 psia) to 450 kPa (65 psia).
 Another aspect of the process is the optional further addition of a steam diluent, wherein the steam diluent is injected into the mixture at a rate of up to five times the hydrocarbon ratio on a volume, or mole, basis in the gas phase. The performance can be enhanced by lowering the partial pressure of the hydrocarbons. Adding a diluent, such as steam or an inert gas, lowers the partial pressure while maintaining the operating temperature and pressure of the system.
 When the process is carried out in a batch process, the contact time varies from 0.1 seconds to 5 hours and preferably from 0.1 seconds to 0.1 hour. The longer contact times are used at lower temperatures while shorter times are used at higher temperatures, assuming all other process variables are equal. Further, when the process is carried out in a continuous mode, the weight hourly space velocity (WHS V) based on the total feed (including any diluents) can vary from 5 hr-1 to 200 hr-1 and preferably from 10 hr-1 to 100 hr-1. As is understood in the art, the weight hourly space velocity is the weight flow of the feed divided by the catalyst weight.
 Results from runs with the modified zeolites demonstrate the increased conversion. Of note is the increased ratio of propylene to ethylene produced in the conversions. The results of naphtha cracking using several modified zeolites of the present invention are shown in Table 2. The results are for a single pass of naphtha with zeolites in a
microactivity test unit. The naphtha is a full boiling naphtha in the C5 to C11 range containing 87% paraffins and naphthenes and 13% aromatics. The reaction conditions were an inlet temperature of 665°C, reactor pressure of 150 kPa (22 psia), and a WHSV of 19 during injection. All of the zeolites were comprised of 80% zeolite and 20% binder. Of note, are the ratios of propylene to ethylene in the tests. The ratio of propylene to ethylene ranged from 0.76 to 1.18. This exhibits the desired ability to increase the propylene yield during the production of ethylene and propylene. In addition, recycling the C2 and heavier hydrocarbons will increase the yield of ethylene and propylene from the naphtha feedstock.
 Tables 2a and 2b show the yields of several templated zeolites having the undesired properties and several zeolites having desired properties. The main feature screened shows that zeolites having high pore size indices, or ring sizes larger than 10 membered rings, have a low selectivity for ethylene and propylene, and therefore are unsuitable for this process.
 Table 3 shows molecular sieves when prepared to produce the desired properties relative to pore size, pore channel length, and acid site density provides good selectivity and conversion of naphtha to propylene and ethylene. This is further illustrated in Figures 7 to 10, comparing ferrierite with a zeolite lacking the desired characteristics, i.e. an MFI type zeolite. Figures 7 to 10 are for the results of pulse micro-reactor tests of naphtha cracking over high and low ratio ferrierites and MFI zeolites, showing percent selectivity vs. percent conversion. The high and low ratio refer to the Si: Al atomic ratios. The reaction conditions of the micro-reactor tests are 5000 GHSV (gas hourly space velocity) and a temperature of 650°C. In Figure 7, the ferrierite, having desired characteristics and prepared with a template, produces a high propylene selectivity and high conversion. Figure 8 shows the desired ferrierite has a low aromatics selectivity and high conversion when compared with a zeolite having an MFI framework structure and a ferrierite not having desired characteristics (low
ratio ferrierite). Figure 9 shows a comparison of the desired ferrierite with a low ratio ferrierite and a zeolite with an MFI framework structure for ethylene production. The ethylene selectivity for the ferrierites is greater than the MFI zeolite for which the pore size index is much higher. The templated ferrierite also has an improved conversion over the low ratio ferrierite. The overall improvement is best seen when comparing the total ethylene and propylene selectivity as shown in Figure 10. The high ratio ferrierite demonstrates significant improvement in selectivity and conversion over a low ratio ferrierite and an MFI zeolite. The MFI zeolite has a 3-d interconnected pore structure and allows for greater conversion of naphtha to aromatics, an undesired product that needs to be separated from any product stream as well as any recycle stream. The disadvantage of the low ratio ferrierite is the high acid site density which causes Al to come out of the framework under simple reaction conditions. The templated ferrierite was made with a lower acid site density than the low ratio ferrierite. By increasing the silica to alumina ratio there is an improvement in propylene selectivity and naphtha conversion, while maintaining a low aromatics generation.
 Table 4 further lists a comparison of two aspects of the invention showing a comparison of the results of tests using a low ratio ferrierite, a high ratio ferrierite and a ferrierite with a small crystalline size. The tests were run in a microreactor with an inlet feed temperature of 665°C, other operating conditions were as described above. A comparison of the low ratio ferrierite with the high ratio ferrierite shows significant improvement in the conversion of the naphtha feed. In addition, a comparison of the low ratio ferrierite with relatively large crystallite size of 1-2 micrometers, with a low ratio ferrierite having a small crystallite size of 0.2 micrometers demonstrates significant improvement in the conversion of the naphtha feed with decrease in crystal size. These are further demonstrations of the importance of the silicon to aluminum atomic ratio and the control of the size of channels within the crystal through the sizing of the catalyst crystals.
 Without being bound by any theory, it is believed that the improvement in ethylene and propylene production results from the combined characteristics of the molecular sieves defined in this invention. The pore must be of sufficient size to permit entry by larger hydrocarbons, particularly isoparaffins and naphthenes. At the same time the pores must be sufficiently small to inhibit the production of aromatic compounds within the pores but not limit the cracking to lower molecular weight olefins. The acid sites need sufficient spacing,
or low enough alumina density, to limit undesirable reactions of ethylene and propylene, and to minimize the removal of Al from the framework under calcination, reaction and regeneration conditions. The residence time within the pores is an additional factor controlling the production of ethylene and propylene, and one which is controlled by limiting the length of the pore channels.
1. A process for selective catalytic cracking of naphtha to ethylene and propylene comprising contacting a naphtha feedstock with a catalyst at reaction conditions, wherein the reaction conditions include a temperature in the range from 550 °C to 700 °C and a pressure in the range from 135 kPa to 273 kPa, to produce ethylene and propylene, the catalyst comprising a molecular sieve having non-intersecting 10 membered ring channels with a dimension from 0.1 micrometers to 0.3 micrometers in the channel direction, and having a silicon to aluminum atomic ratio from 20 to 200, wherein the 10 membered rings form elliptical pores with pore index between 22 A2 and 30 A2 and having a pore mouth, a pore interior and a surface external to the pore.
2. The process as claimed in claim 1 comprising adding a steam diluent, wherein the steam diluent is fed in a volume ratio to the naphtha feedstock in the range from greater than 0 to 5.
3. The process as claimed in claim 1 wherein the propylene to ethylene ratio produced is greater than 0.7.
4. The process as claimed in claim 1 wherein the external surface has acidic sites which have been neutralized.
5. The process as claimed in claim 1 wherein the pores are characterized by a decreasing aluminum concentration from the pore mouth to the pore interior.
6. The process as claimed in claim 1 wherein the catalyst comprises a layered molecular sieve comprising an inner layer having pores made of 8 or 10 membered rings having a first three dimensional framework structure, and an outer layer having pores made of 10 membered rings having a second three dimensional framework structure, wherein the pores in the second structure overlay the pores in the first structure.
7. The process as claimed in claim 6 wherein the inner layer comprises at least one layer comprising a zeolite selected from the group consisting of wenkite, chabazite, dachiardite, erionite, zeolite A, ZK-4, epistilbite, laumontite, wienebeneite, EU-I, UZM-5, UZM-9, UZM-12 and mixtures thereof.
8. The process as claimed in claim 6 wherein the outer layer comprises at least one layer comprising a zeolite selected from the group consisting of ferrierite, ZSM-22, ZSM-23, ZSM-
50, ZSM-57, ZSM-11, ZSM-5, NU-87, clinoptilolite, and mixtures thereof.
|Indian Patent Application Number||6727/DELNP/2007|
|PG Journal Number||07/2012|
|Date of Filing||30-Aug-2007|
|Name of Patentee||UOP LLC|
|Applicant Address||25 EAST ALGONQUIN ROAD, P.O. BOX 5017, DES PLAINES, ILLINOIS 60017-5017, U.S.A.|
|PCT International Classification Number||C10G 11/05|
|PCT International Application Number||PCT/US2005/007806|
|PCT International Filing date||2005-03-11|