Electrochemical importance of Anode and Cathode Coating in a Membrane Cell in Chlor Alkali Industry
Membrane Cell operation for the production of Caustic and Chlorine is the latest environment and energy friendly process for a Chlor-Alkali Plant. The membrane cell consists of Cathode (Nickel), Anode (Titanium) and a floro carbonated membrane. By the continuous process and process requirement in energy point of view in a normal running Chlor-Alkali Plant, Anode and Cathode coating is required in order to increase more lifetime and more productivity for a cell. This anode and cathode coating not only increase the total productivity of a Chlor-Alkali Unit but also can decrease the fixed cost for a unit by increasing process reliability. A study has been done to understand the electrochemical importance of anode and cathode coating and the thrust zone for more research in this area to increase the productivity as well as increasing the depreciation time for the Cell.
Chlor Alkali Industry is a special and separate zone of chemical Engineering process and design which meets the need of tones of caustic for textile, pulp and paper, pharmaceutical industries and chlorine for PVC, water purification, and bleaching industries. In industry, from the last century caustic and chlorine is produced by Electrolysis of saturated Brine (320gpl of NaCl in H2O) by diaphragm or mercury or Membrane cell operation. But for operational and cost Excellence Membrane cell electrolysis process In Chlor-Alkali Industry dominates over the other two processes from the last four to five decades. In Membrane cell Electrolysis process, the membrane is set between a Cathode (Ni) and Anode (Ti) and the electrolysis takes place in both Cathode and anode side by high current.
Saturated Brine comes in anode side and depleted into Na+ and Cl- ions. 26% caustic comes in Cathode side where depletion of water into H+ and OH- ion takes place. Membrane is a very thin perfluroted substance with carboxylic coating in Cathode side and sulphonic coating in anode side which only allows Na+ ion in cathode side from anode side. NaOH forms in cathode side with H2 as a byproduct, and Cl2 forms in the anode side with lean brine recycle after dechlorination process. Membrane structure and selectivity is a separate zone of research and is not the scope of present study. The Membrane cell dominates over other two electrochemical manufacturing process of Chlor-Alkali Industry due to the following reasons.
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