A Curtin University research team has collocated with Woodside Futurelab to develop SpiroPak, the overall winner of the 2019 Curtinnovation Awards.
The product was developed by Dr Tejas Bhatelia and a research team at Curtin’s Western Australian school of mines: minerals, energy and chemical engineering.
SpiroPak’s design was inspired by nature to provide more effective and energy-efficient separation of carbon dioxide from natural gas in liquified natural gas (LNG) processing.
The structured packing technology is designed to optimise the contact of gas and liquid.
The technology increases packing contact surface area up to five times and reduces pressure loss and energy usage by up to 70 per cent.
SpiroPak also creates a more even flow, allowing columns to be built 35 per cent smaller without affecting capacity.
Retrofitting Spiro Pak to existing columns in traditional LNG facilities could improve flow by up to 40 per cent.
Curtin University deputy vice-chancellor research professor Chris Moran said SpiroPak created significant efficiencies in LNG processing.
“SpiroPak has the potential to save Australia’s globally competitive and strategically important oil and gas industry millions of dollars every year,” Moran said.
The Curtinnovation Awards recognises exceptional research outcomes that translate into new product and services.
“The Curtinnovation Awards aim to identify new technologies, products and services arising from the university’s world-class research and the standard of innovation being created continues to impress every year,” Moran said.