Theoretical Simulation of n-Alkane Cracking on Zeolites

J. A. Swisher, N. Hansen, T. Maesen, F. J. Keil, B. Smit, and A. T. Bell, Theoretical Simulation of n-Alkane Cracking on Zeolites J. Phys. Chem. C 114 (22), 10229 (2010) http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/jp101262y

jp-2010-01262y_0001

Abstract: The kinetics of alkane cracking in zeolites MFI and FAU have been simulated theoretically from first principles. The apparent rate coefficient for alkane cracking was described as the product of the number of alkane molecules per unit mass of zeolite that are close enough to a Brønsted-acid site to be in the reactant state for the cleavage of a specific C−C bond and the intrinsic rate coefficient for the cleavage of that bond. Adsorption thermodynamics were calculated by Monte Carlo simulation and the intrinsic rate coefficient for alkane cracking was determined from density functional theory calculations combined with absolute rate theory. The effects of functional, basis set, and cluster size on the intrinsic activation energy for alkane cracking were investigated. The dependence of the apparent rate coefficient on the carbon number for the cracking of C3−C6 alkanes on MFI and FAU determined by simulation agrees well with experimental observation, but the absolute values of the apparent rate coefficients are a factor of 10 to 100 smaller than those observed. This discrepancy is attributed to the use of a small T5 cluster representation of the Brønsted-acid site. Limited calculations for propane and butane cracking on MFI reveal that significantly better agreement between prediction and observation is achieved using a T23 cluster for both the apparent rate coefficient and the apparent activation energy. The apparent rate coefficients for alkane cracking are noticeably larger for MFI than FAU, in agreement with recent findings reported in the experimental literature.

© Berend Smit 2019