Licensed Processes

Methylamines

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Introduction

The Davy methylamines (MA) flowsheet is the most extensively licensed process of its kind in the world. As such, it is well-proven through extensive use across a majority of operating MA plants. We have continued to improve our process and today offer an improved derivative of our original design.

Our enhanced process creates three MA products: monomethylamine (MMA), dimethylamine (DMA) and trimethylamine (TMA), the final ratio of which is adjustable to suit prevailing commercial requirements.

Methylamines - introduction molecule1 Methylamines - introduction molecule2 Methylamines - introduction molecule3

Process Flowsheet

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Key Reactions

The simplified set of equilibrium reactions shown below yield the mono, di and trimethylamine products:

Process Description

Our methylamines flowsheet employs the Leonard process, which is based upon the vapour-phase reaction between a chosen compound and ammonia in the presence of a catalyst.

Process feedstock

The process feedstocks are liquid methanol and liquid ammonia, which mix with a composite stream of methanol, ammonia and methylamines recycled from downstream distillation.

Amination

The feed stream passes through several heat exchangers, first vaporising and then superheating before entering the methylamines converter.

Here, the vapours pass over catalyst, facilitating an exothermic reaction between the methanol and ammonia to produce MMA, DMA and TMA:

Amination equations GOLD CORRECTED 31JUL2014-sm

Additional disproportionation and transmethylation reactions create amines from other amines.

Methylamines - small equations2-sm

The hot vapour product stream exiting the converter contains the three methylamine products, reaction water and unreacted ammonia and methanol.

The individual quantities of each amine produced are determined by the converter’s feed composition. This in turn is a function of the amounts of each reactant and methylamine product recycled from distillation to join the fresh methanol and ammonia feed.

After passing through a heat recovery system and then a condenser, the process stream, now a liquid, progresses to the distillation stage.

Distillation

The distillation system, comprising a number of columns in series, purifies and separates the crude methylamine products firstly by separating unreacted ammonia and recycling it to the amination stage.

Subsequent distillation then produces pure anhydrous TMA, MMA and DMA.

Residual methanol is extracted from the water and also recycles to the amination stage.

+Process option: product ratio control

The ratio of the three final methylamine products is adjustable to suit particular market demands up to 100%. This is achieved through careful catalyst selection, along with manipulation of the reactor feed composition by adjusting the amounts of MMA, TMA and methanol recycled from distillation.

+Process option: aqueous product

Our flexible plant technology can be tailored to produce methylamines product in anhydrous, and/or the more transportable aqueous form.

The JM Davy Advantage

The Davy methylamines flowsheet is the most extensively licensed process of its kind in the world, and offers the following advantages:

+Highly flexible technology:

  • Allows plant design to deliver optimal product ratios, which can be adjusted online to match future requirements.

+Optimised heat integration:

  • For improved efficiency and reduced operating costs, the amination process includes a heat recovery system that recycles exothermic reaction heat to the incoming feed streams.
  • This reduces required energy input.

+Quality:

  • Improved process offers higher product quality.

+Large capacities:

  • High process output available in a single train.

+Lower environmental impact:

  • Flowsheet includes numerous features to prevent atmospheric emissions and to ensure the plant should fall within legislative limits worldwide.
Core Technologies & Related Processes

Our amination technology brings the Leonard process to life, realising its full potential efficiently, cleanly and productively. Learn more here:

JM Davy offer licensed processes to convert our three methylamines products into the following compounds:


Core Technologies

Our amination technology brings the Leonard process to life, realising its full potential efficiently, cleanly and productively. Learn more here:


Related Processes

JM Davy offer licensed processes to convert our three methylamines products into the following compounds: