Interactions of flow and reaction in fluid catalytic cracking risers

Chao Zhu, You Jun, Rajesh Patel, Dawei Wang, Teh C. Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) is the primary conversion process in oil refining. The performance of an FCC riser strongly depends on the interactions between oil/catalyst flow and cracking kinetics, but most FCC riser models do not consider such interactions. Accordingly, this work develops a computationally simple model capturing the dominant features of flow-reaction coupling in the riser's dense phase and acceleration zones. Specifically, the particle-particle collision force and the particle-fluid interfacial force are considered. With a four-lump kinetic model, the riser model predicts conversion and selectivity from the axial profile of the catalyst-to-oil ratio resulting from particle-fluid interfacial momentum transfer. The cracking intensity in the riser bottom zone is much greater than that calculated from conventional riser models, which neglects oil-catalyst hydrodynamic coupling and catalyst dilution due to volume expansion. The present model compares well with published data and predicts conversion-selectivity patterns that are qualitatively different from those obtained from conventional models.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3122-3131
Number of pages10
JournalAIChE Journal
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Environmental Engineering
  • General Chemical Engineering


  • Circulating fluidized beds
  • FCC process modeling
  • FCC riser modeling
  • Flow-reaction interactions in FCC
  • Hydrodynamic effects in fcc


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