The Shell Sulfur Degassing Process* has been developed to remove H2S and H2Sx from liquid sulfur eliminating potential toxic and explosion hazards associated with handling, transport and storage of liquid sulfur. Elemental, sulfur produced by the Claus process contains both physically dissolved H2S and chemically bound H2S in the form of hydrogen polysulfides (sulfanes): H2Sx. The principle of sulfur degassing is to accelerate decomposition of the polysulfides according to H2Sx H2S + Sx-1 and to remove the dissolved H2S from the liquid sulfur. In the Shell Sulfur Degassing Process, the sulfur is degassed to less than 10 ppm wt H2S/H2Sx.
Degassing is carried out as a continuous process in the degassing compartment of the Claus plant sulfur pit or in a dedicated vessel. The actual degassing takes place in the stripping column where sulfur is vigorously agitated by bubbling air through the liquid sulfur.
As the stripping column is open at the bottom and the top, the sulfur can circulate through the stripping column and a thorough mixing with the total content of the degassing compartment is achieved. The concept allows for a large number of design variants. it does not use a catalyst and has no moving parts.
In the Shell Sulfur Degassing Process, air stripping is applied without addition of chemicals. Air is supplied to the stripping column at a pressure of approx. 1.5 bara either as a slipstream from the Claus air blower or by a dedicated blower. Vent gas is charged to an incinerator or can be recycled back to the sulfur plant. The degassified sulfur flows over a weir to the pumping compartment and is pumped on level control to storage. The Shell Sulfur Degassing Process is an inherently safe system that prevents the formation of an explosive H2S/air mixture.
- Safer working conditions for handling liquid sulfur.
- Reduced corrosion in transport and storage equipment.
- Reduced fugitive emissions from the sulfur pit.
- No chemicals present in the product sulfur.
- No moving parts.
More than 350 Shell Sulfur Degassing systems ranging in capacity from 10 to 4000 t/d sulfur production are in operation or are under design/ construction throughout the world demonstrating the reliability, simplicity and flexibility of the process.
Jacobs Nederland B.V., Leiden, The Netherlands, and Jacobs Canada, Calgary together forming Jacobs Comprimo® Sulfur Solutions, is the exclusive worldwide licensor of behalf on Shell Research Ltd. since 1981.