Separation of light hydrocarbons with metal-organic frameworks

CUI Xili1 XING Huabin1

(1.College of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Key Laboratory of Biomass Chemical Engineering, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China 310027)

【Abstract】Separation and purification of structurally similar olefin/paraffin/alkyne mixtures are vital important processes in chemical industry. Light hydrocarbons have similar physical and chemical properties, and only have minor difference in carbon number and degrees of unsaturation. Traditional cryogenic distillation usually exhibit low selectivity for structurally-related hydrocarbons and thus are energy-intensive processes. The diversity and designability of metal-organic frameworks (MOFs)/porous coordination polymers (PCPs) makes them can recognize the minor difference of different hydrocarbon molecules. Therefore, many significant progresses have been made in hydrocarbon separation with microporous MOFs as novel adsorbents. In this review, the recent progresses of MOFs in the adsorptive separation of olefin/paraffin/alkyne mixtures (C2 and C3) are systematically summarized. Additionally, the current problems and the future research directions to address the challenges in the field of separation of light hydrocarbons with MOFs are discussed.

【Keywords】 light hydrocarbons; adsorption; separation; olefin; alkane; alkynes; metal-organic frameworks;


【Funds】 National Natural Science Foundation of China (21725603, 21436010) Natural Science Foundation of Zhejiang Province (LZ18B060001)

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This Article


CN: 11-2795/K

Vol 27, No. 04, Pages 136-149+182

December 2017


Article Outline



  • Introduction
  • 1 MOFs
  • 2 Application of MOFs in adsorptive separation of light hydrocarbons
  • 3 Conclusions
  • References