A Study of the Bubble Column Evaporator Method for Improved Ammonium Bicarbonate Decomposition in Aqueous Solutions: Desalination and Other Techniques

Muhammad Shahid, Mojtaba Taseidifar, Richard M. Pashley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A bubble column was used to study the improved thermal decomposition of NH4HCO3 in aqueous solution using a continuous flow of hot gas bubbles of optimum sizes (1-3 mm) produced via controlled bubble coalescence to maintain bubble size. The rapid transfer of heat from small, hot (dry) gas bubbles to the surrounding water, i.e. into a transient hot surface layer, was used as an effective and energy efficient method of decomposing ammonium bicarbonate in aqueous solution. It is shown that the continuous flow of (dry) hot gases, even at 275°C, only heat the aqueous solution in the bubble column to about 57°C, at which it was also established that NH4HCO3 has a negligible decomposition rate even with long-term exposure to this solution temperature. Hence, the effects observed appeared to be caused entirely by the effective collisions between the hot gas bubbles and the solute. It was also established that the use of high gas inlet temperatures can reduce the thermal energy requirement to only about 50% (i.e. about 575 kJ/L) of that reported in previous studies and less than 25% of solution boiling.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-55
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - Mar 22 2021

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