Adsorptive removal of heat stable salt anions from industrial lean amine solvent using anion exchange resins from gas sweetening unit

Priyabrata Pal, Fawzi Banat, Ahmed AlShoaibi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


The formation of heat stable salts (HSS) in natural gas sweetening unit causes many problems such as corrosion, foaming and fouling of the equipment. HSS being resistant to heat cannot be removed from the solvent by simple heating in the regenerator, hence demanding new approaches for HSS removal from aqueous solution of lean amine (methyldiethanolamine) solvent. In this study, four different grades of commercial anion exchange resins designated as Resins A-D were tested to remove major organic acid anions, sulfates and nitrates from direct raw industrial lean amine solution. Based upon the best percentage removal data, Resin C was selected for elaborate batch and continuous ion-exchange adsorption studies. The solvent-to-resin ratio was seen to administer a prime effect on controlling the adsorption process. SEM and FTIR analysis on Resin C mapped the surface morphology changes and interaction of HSS adsorption process over the resin. The equilibrium batch sorption studies for organic acid anions removal were fitted into Langmuir, Freundlich, Temkin and Dubinin-Radushkevich (D-R) model isotherms to obtain the best fitted model. It was observed that Langmuir equilibrium isotherm best explained the ion exchange process. The Langmuir model predicted qmax value of 528.24mg/g. The sorption kinetics obeys pseudo-first-order having rate constant 1.3763min-1. The negative values of Gibb's free energy explainspontaneity of the reaction with exothermic heat of adsorption (δH=-9.428kJ/mol) for the removal of organic acid anions using anion exchange resins. The breakthrough curves for removal of organics in column bed with 2.54cm column diameter and flow rate of 5ml/min was achieved within 7h.

Original languageBritish English
Pages (from-to)14-21
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Natural Gas Science and Engineering
StatePublished - Nov 2013


  • Adsorption isotherms
  • Breakthrough curve
  • Gas sweetening
  • Heat stable salts
  • Ion exchange


Dive into the research topics of 'Adsorptive removal of heat stable salt anions from industrial lean amine solvent using anion exchange resins from gas sweetening unit'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this