Патент USA US2407705код для вставки
Sept. 17, 1946. 2,407,700 L. C. 4HUFF PROCESS FOR THE CONVERSION OF FLUID REACTANTS Filed June 26, 1944 59 ë‘íäaßaw» I 2,407,700 Patented Sept. 17, 1946 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE 2,407,700 » PROCESS FOR THE CONVERSION 0F FLUID REACTANTS ' Lyman C. Huff, Chicago, Ill., assignor to Universal ` Oil Products Company, Chicago, Ill., a corpora ‘ tion of Delaware Application June 26, 1944, Serial No. 542,210 5 Claims. (Cl. 1536-52) 2 1 dusty nature should be avoided so that -they will not excessively iill the voids between the larger particles and give an excessive pressure drop `for This is a continuation-in-part of my co-pend ing application Serial Number 530,645, filed April 12, 1944. `the reactants and regenerating gases passing through the beds. For this reason, the particles The invention is directed to an improved meth od and means for effecting the conversion of fluid reactants in the presence of a mass of sub divided solid contact material which becomes contaminated with deleterious products of the ‘ conversion reaction and `is regenerated by remov ing the 4deleterious contaminants. The process is of the type in which the conversion step and charged to the system are preferably of substan tially uniform or well graded size and any ex cessive quantity of ñnes produced by attrition of the larger particles within the system is'pref erably removed from the system and replaced >by larger particles. To avoid excessive attrition, the particles should have good structural strength. the regenerating step are conducted continuous ly and‘simultaneously in separate confined reac» tion and regenerating -zones Íbetween and through which the subdivided solid contact material is The use of substantially spherical particles will also greatly assist in avoiding excessive attrition. One suitable method of preparing synthetic cata lysts which may be advantageously usedin the continuously circulated. ` ‘ The process and apparatus are particularly acl-_ 1 present process is disclosed lin application Serial Number 516,392 of Glenn M. Webb and Reno W. vantageous as applied to hydrocarbon conversion Moehl, ñled December 3l, 1943. reactions, such as catalytic cracking, reforming, dehydrogenation, dehydrocyclization or aromati 20 A special feature of the invention resides in the manner andrmeans whereby continuous cir zation `and the -like,> in which `the `Contact mate culation of the solid particles of catalyst or con rial .comprisescatalyst which promotesthe de-` tact material is »effected through »the system. sired -ihydrocarbon'conversion reaction. The in Their circulation is effected, in part, by gravita vention is further more particularly directed to` an improved operation of the type in which the 25 tional descent from a separating zone and hopper mounted above the reaction and regenerating mass-of subdivided solid catalyst or Contact ma vessels serially through these vessels, and, in part, by Vdischarging the solid particles from the lower 4vessel of .the series into a gas-lift transfer line bedcf downwardly moving solid particles. Preferably, the catalyst or -contact material 30 Wherein they are commingled »with transporting fiuid and carried-upwardly by the latter into thel employed is in .the form `of small substantially aforesaid separating zone andhopper to comspherical particles. Their size, Whether-spheri cal or-of other regular Aor irregular shape, is fsuf- ’ plete the circuit.l The solid particles pass down wardly from the hopper through the contacting ficient-ithat the particles will `not` compact ‘eX-«f vessels in the form of a continuous and uninter , cessively of substantial togivea depth high »are`pressure employed drop inwhen the reacf,r beds rupted . relatively compact column. vBy elimi terial in the reaction and regenerating zones is maintained in the form of 1a relatively comp-act ` nating intermediate feeding Vdevices and the like i tion` and regenerating zones. YIt >is a further re-~` quirement that the `solid- particles be suiiiciently which wouldinterrupt the -continuity of 'the col small to facilitate their transportation bygas liftiin a part of Ythe circuit through which they , umn, the height ofr the latter imposes a substan .tial pressure on the solid particles `at the bottom oi'ithe «column ‘which is materially greater than flow between the reaction `and rregenerating ves-` the Ygas or vapor pressure prevailing above the sels. The `ability of ythe solid particles to be trans column in the separating Zone Yand hopper. In’ the gas-lift transfer line through which the vsolid ported by gas-lift can be -calcula‘tecbby Vknown formulae, .taking vinto Íaccount their average den sity andthe >density and velocity of the trans particles are'tran'sported from the lower contact.- ' ing vessel Vof the series back to the separating Zone and hopper, the particles are suspended in the transporting fluid so that there is little vor no porting ñuid. , To be readily'transported by gas lift and to avoid excessive compaction in the beds, I have found that spherical particles of cracking accumulative » `weight ofVV solid particles in the catalyst, for example, `consisting `predominantly 60 height of the gas-lift .transfer line and they flow upwardly with the transporting fluid .to the -rela-‘ of silica and `one or more metal oxides, such .as tively low pressure -zone prevailing in the sepa alumina, `zirconia, magnesia `and »the like, are preferably from 2 yto »4 Ymm.„averag<_ediameter. The presence the beds .of substantial quantif ` ties of excessivelyñne vparticles of a powdery >or rating vessel and hopper. As another special feature of the invention I . 55 prefer to employ vaporous and/or gaseous prod 'f 2,407,700 4 3 . ucts discharged from the reaction Zone as the transporting fluid for the solid particles in the gas-lift transfer line. As applied to the con version of „normally liquid products, such as, for example, the catalytic cracking of hydrocarbon oil, this use of outgoing Vaporous conversion products as transporting fluid is advantageous in that. suiîicient pressure can be developed in the Vaporous stream of out-going conversion prod ucts to permit> its use as transporting fluid by pumping the charging oil being supplied to the reactor in liquid state, which is materially less stripping gas, such as steam, for example, which is supplied to the lower portion of the stripper through line 6 and valve 'I and is distributed substantially uniformly over the cross-sectional area of bed 5 by a suitable distributing member 8 provided within the lower portion of the strip per. The Stripped-out volatiles and stripping gas» are discharged'from the. upper extremity of bed 5 into the space 9 provided thereabove within vessel 5 and are thence discharged through line >IE) and valve I I to suitable separating and recov ery equipment, not illustrated. This separating expensive than employing a gas compressor or `. ¿and recovery equipment may conveniently com the like to develop suiñcient pressure in the stream of transporting fluid, as would be neces-sary when employing incoming or outgoing re generating gas or gas from an external source as the transporting fluid. c -~ . ~ » Although the features of the invention are advantageously applicable to the conversion or treatment of fluid reactants generally in the presence of a mass Vof subdivided solid contact material, catalyst or`reagent, they are, as previ prise the same fractionating equipment to which Vaporous and gaseous hydrocarbon conversion products of the process are supplied, as will be later described.4 ' ` The stripped catalyst particles pass downward ly about member 8 into the conical lower section of stripper 3 and are thence directed through conduit l2 into regenerator I3 wherein they move downward through the relatively compactY bed I4 maintained in this zone. Air or other suitable ously mentioned, particularly advantageous as oxygen-containing gas is supplied to the Áregen applied to the catalytic conversion of fluid hydro 25 erator through line I5 and valve I6 and is dis carbons and, for the sake of being more explicit in illustrating therfeatures and advantages of the invention, the succeeding description will b-e directed principally to an operation in which hy drocarbon oil is catalytically cracked. - The accompanying diagrammatic drawing is an elevational View,` shown principally in sec tion; of one speciñc _form of apparatus embody ing the features of the invention and in which the improved process provided by the invention may be successfully conducted.` Y Referring now to the drawing and to the flow through the system illustrated, the catalyst par suitable distributing member‘l'l from which it passesupwardly into bed I4. The catalyst particles collected in bed 2 will have accumulated deleterious heavy combustible Yprod l Combustible con- , taminants are burned from the solid catalyst par ticles by their contact- vwith Vthe oxidizing gas passing countercurrent -thereto through bed I4. Resulting gaseous'productsof combustionl are discharged from the upper 'extremity of bed I4 into a-space provided thereabove within the re ‘ generator, from which they are directed through line 51 and valve 58, preferably to suitable h‘eat` ' recovery equipment of any ticles‘are collected, as will be later described, within the separating vessel and hopper I in the form Vof a relatively compact bed 2. tributed substantially uniformly over the hori zontal cross-section of bed Ill by means of a trated. desired form not 'illus " - » A substantial portion of the heat developed by burningv the combustible contaminants inthe' re generating step is stored in the solid catalyst par ticles dischargedY from the lower portionfof this ' ucts of the cracking or hydrocarbonv conversion zone. The stream'or column of catalyst particles reaction being conducted within the system.A All 45 passing from the regenerator will also containy or a major portion of these combustible deposits entrained and adsorbed gasesl comprising a part are to be burned from the catalyst particles in of the regenerating gas employed and resulting» the regenerating step, as will be later described. combustion gases. To prevent these entrained In addition, the bed 2 contains occluded and andV adsorbed gases from enteringthe’reaction adsorbed transporting gas in which the solid par 50 zone the stream of catalyst being supplied >from ticles »were transported to vessel I. When, as in the regenerator to the reactor preferably is sub the? case illustrated, outgoing vaporous and gas- ’ stantially stripped of such material and, in they ecus products ofv the hydrocarbon conversion're case illustrated, a stripper IS similar ,in form to` action are employed as the transporting Huid,V stripper 3 above mentioned'is interposed between the occluded and adsorbed vapors and gasesare 55 the regenerator and the reactor. The hot regen o_f alpvaluble nature and if not removed and recovered would be lost by burning- inthe suc ceeding regenerating step. Furthermore,` their »erat'ed vcatalyst p_asses about ' the -‘(,ìistrilc'lutingV member I 'l in the lower portion of the ‘regeneratorf into the substantially’conical bottom sectionv of' combustion in the regenerator would develop'ad ditional heat in this step, which is ordinarily 60 this vessel and isthence` directed through conduit I9 _into and throughY the relatively compactV bedz undesirable. Excessive heating of the'ca'talystw l 20 vof catalyst particlesmaintained.within, strip-Í will destroy or permanently impair its activity» per I8. Steam or other suitable stripping gas isl >»In view'of the inclusion of Valuble light hydro supplied to the lower portion of stripper~l8 carbons in the bed 2 of solid particles accumu-Ã1 lated in vessel I, >’a stripping vessel 3 is interposed 65 through line 2| and-„valve 22 to be distributed:to` bed I4 by member 23 disposed within the lower between this hopper and the regenerator wherein occluded and adsorbed volatile hydrocarbons are substantially-removed from -the solid particles before they enter the regenerator. .The solid: particles pass downwardly from the lower, hop per-like portion >of Vvessel I vthrough-conduit VIl _ 70 into the upper portion of stripper 3. ï 'Here they' pass down'wardlythrough another’relatively com pact bed 5 of the solid particles maintained in portion of the stripping vessel and to pass up-f wardly from member 23 through bed 20 counter- . current to the descendingÍsolid particles.Re-’~ Vsultin‘g stripping gas and stripped-out gases areV ' discharged from the upper portion of bed `20 into the space 23 provided thereabove within the strip- ' per and are-thence discharged through line ‘25 and va1ve'26, preferablyito‘ the same «heat re-jj'. thiszone countercurrent -to a stream of suitable 75 covery equipment to whichcombustion gases, are, n ' r 5 discharged,- as previously-'f mentioned, from re»` generator I3. The` Velocity off the'L transportingI gas-«isV mate rialllyî reducedfiim space 45‘ofthelseparatingvesseh The substantial-ly» striïpped catalyst particles lí-` as compared ‘with its: velocity in line `412 ssoithat'. all or.' a substantialfportion ofithescatalyst1~pamti’ pa-ss- downward‘lyL about distributing member 23T` into thi,y cone-like- l‘ower-i section of stripper' I8l` and ‘are thence- discharged? through conduit 2-11 into reactor 28 to pass downwardly through the relativelyf compactl bed“ ¿9l ot catalyst.. particles cles _separate by gravity from-the; transporti'ng` gas-Hin; vessel-L I and: collect. in:` the‘lower` portion oi“j thiszone toitormthefbed 2„ The; transporting gas, which, as` previously mentioned. comprises; vaporous: andi gaseous hydrocarbon conversion maintained within this zone. Fluid’ reactants' to be converted, which, in» the.~ 10. products, ircthe case! illustrated, is-directed from the upper: portionzof; vessel l" through. line y 4&landi case-illustrated, comprise» hydrocarbon oil to be valvesA t1. to suitable fractionating and recovery crackedì; are supplied in' liquid state through line equipment of- any desired conventional? form: 59"' and“ valve» 30i to pump âl-l'-f wherefronr ‘they are. which is not"~ pertinent; totr the presentÁ inyentiom fed underl theI pressure imposed’ by pumpÁ~ 3| , and isl therefore not. illustrated;` When.` d‘esireci‘v through line 32 i toheating coili 33-` disposed within and as: previously indicated, that:- quantity' of: they furnace- 34». Here the oi'll iïsß- substantially vapor’-Y vaporous: and'l gaseous> conyîersion:products:»diseV izedE and» heated-to ornear tha reaction: temperachargedïfrom-k reactor' 2B which may notl'b'@ reí-V ture~desiredl` andthe heated vapors areL` directed" quired as; transporting' huid; in; transiter.1 :line: 425: from coil-` 3?.-`> through> line| 35Í into> a- suitable dis tributing' memberl 35- disposedA within the-lower 20A may beV directed. throughl valve 3a> in linel 3.8l to; the; sameV fractionatingî. and:` recovery r equipmentl portions‘of reactor'28; wherefrornA theypass up to which the vapors and gases.utilizedyas':transf` wardly into bedf 29-= andi are converted‘lbyf counter.-Y porting fluid are directed from vessel Il. current contact- with» thev catalyst particles» pass'-A Adjustment. of theoriiice or opening through ing- through the bed: Resulting vaporous@ and. gaseous con-version4 products* are discharged-from „ the flow-regulating; Valvea 4 IÁ in` conduit', 40 regu:` lates the: rate. aty which catalyst particles arefcirs theA upper extremity ofi bedi 2l);i into the ‘space 31. culated through the. system. andxthis rate; mayI provided" thereabove within the reactor, from be adjusted. to suit requirementsrso asjtogivefthe which-` they' are discharged; through l line'A 38V and. desired residence time` for the catalyst; inv therA may pass, in part, through valve t9E in this-lineÍ to suitable fractionating and recovers7J equipment. 30 reaction and regeneratingi'izonesiand; give the ; cle--` sired catalysteoil ratio- in. the, reactor-A and»` the. of` any desired conventional form-5 not- illustrated'. desired ratio of catalyst toi the; regenerating,` gas». The» temperature of' the catalyst is reduced. actor"` by giving up heat to the endothermic- hy d-rocarbon conversion reaction-»which it promotes.. andì the catalyst particlesi accumulate deleteriousy comlïoustible~ contaminants » comprising heavy in theregenerator.v The-term “catalyst-oilratiof’ ' as here used refers to the-,poundsiof . catalyst-...ven_--` . tering theV reaction», zone. per,` hour,` per pound> ot. oil; supplied to this zona. The= term “catalyst regenerating gas ratio” as here. used refersto the.. pounds` of4 catalyst. enteringV the regenerator per products or the hydrocarbon'conversion reaction; hour, per pound, of. regenerating. gas, supplied. to. To-restore‘ its activityrand heatl content the-:catas lysteis1L returned from thereactor to4 the regen-` 40. this zone. By regulating. the rate4 at which catalyst is» crater;A thusd4 settingV up a cyclicV now' of‘catalystv circulated through the system4 it, is. possible to through the system. obtain a close approach between the average Thepartially cooled' and-‘contaminated catalyst temperature of4 the> catalyst'. passing through the passes downwardly about distributingj member 36v in> the lower portion off theL reactor' into: the. y regenerator and the average 'temperature ofthe catalyst passing through the, reactor. When this cone-like-'lower sectionof thisf‘vessel and is -thenca results in a regenerator temperature, which is directed through conduit 4c* and through an . adi@ relatively close` to the reaction temperaturev de’ j‘usta-ble orifice or flow-regulating valve 4ìl. pro videdï in> conduit tu adjacent its lowerI end‘ into'.` si'red it is unnecessary to supply additional'heat a substantially straight upwardly extending: gasl-y 510iA to or abstract additional heat from the catalyst~ lift'transieriline)42.> In line 42 the catalyst par:-A as it circulates through the, system'. However, ticlesf are commingl'ed? with i and suspended` inH a' as applied to reactions such as catalytic crackL ing in an operation producing commercially stream- oi? transportingl- ii’uid.'v which., in the. caserV practical yields’of the desired‘products; the quarr illustrated, comprises all or a portion of thezvae> porous` and gaseous conversion products» dis» tity of"combustible‘ depositsV accumulated by the charged' from reactor‘ 281- Thef» conversion prodi catalyst in the reaction step“ andV` burn-edi there' ucts` to beI used'astransportin'g fluid' arel directed fromï in, the> regenerating step is usually" more< from line-38Av under the vaporior gas pressure pre-than that required tostore in the4 catalyst- all vailing‘ within theA reactor above bed 29 throughÁ of' the heat necessary for conductingl the-hydro-~ line 4A3ïand‘4 valve Mintotransfer'line 42.. carbon conversion reaction. I thereforeV provid(am The vapor‘or gasfpressure maintained invessel’ for abstracting excess-‘heat from the catalyst, If abovei'ìhelbedî 2 is materially less than .thestaticr when desired. This maybe done; as'intvhel case: pressure developed inthe relatively compact col illustrated, either after the` catalyst leaves the umn of catalyst particles above the adjustable: reactor and before it' enters'the regenerator or4 orifice or flow-regulating valve. 4I in line 4E!" and GSL after the catalyst leaves the regenerator‘and‘be» thevapor or gas' pressure maintained' in space 31 fore it enters thev reactor or, in part, by'both.. »In the caseillustrated, a. cooling coil 48` isfpro-L within‘the reactor-is suiiiciently greater than that vided in theY lower portionf of vessel I` througlr prevailing‘in‘the space above bed 2 in Vessel' I> to which a suitable cooling iiuid, Such as steam, overcome the pressure dropA in the stream of transporting gas as vit passes through line 38, line 70A water,v oil` or the likel is: passed via lines-:.491 and 5i] in an amount- controlled by valve. '5l ïto: abs.1 43> and- gas-liit transfer line 42 so that the- trans stract the desired quantity ot> heat from the; catF porting gas“ and the catalyst particles suspended al'yst passing through. bed 2. Alternatively, a. therein fi‘ow upwardly throughA the- gas-liftv trans fer'line42- into'the disengagi-ng space 45~ provided> cooler'of conduit ` `lll), any .transfer-‘l suitableiorm line` l 42maybe.` or in„_conduits>, interposed 4‘.` or'` within vesselï‘l above bedZ‘. i ' v ‘ « ' 75. 2,407,700l 7 |2vor1n stripper 3, for the purpose of controllably reducing the temperature of the catalyst being suppliedlto the regenerator from the reactor and thus reducing the average temperature obtained inthe regenerator. The drawing also illustrates the provision of a suitable cooler 52 in conduit 21 and provision for 8 zone and utilizedv at least in part as said trans porting fluid. `~ f l » 3. A process such as deñned in claim 1„wherein said conversion reaction comprises the catalytic crackìng'of normally yliquid hydrocarbons and the subdivided solid contact material comprises cracking catalyst. ` passing suitable cooling fluid . such as steam, - 4. The process of >endothermically converting water, oil or the like through this cooler in indi rect contact and heat transfer relation with the catalyst passing from the regenerator to the re porous state and in the presence of subdivided solid catalyst which promotes the conversionvre-4 actor.- Cooling fluid is supplied to cooler ' ‘52 action comprising imposing a‘superatmospheric through line 53 and is discharged therefrom through line 54 in‘amounts regulated by valve pressure on the hydrocarbons in liquid state and substantially heating the same to _eiïect their 55.` Alternatively; a suitable cooler may be lo cated in conduit I9 or in the stripping vessel I8 vapors to a conñned reaction zone'and into con' for-“controllably reducing the temperature of the normally liquid hydrocarbons in essentially va substantial vaporization, supplying the -heated, tact with a relatively compact bed of downwardly catalyst supplied to therreactor from the regen movingi catalyst particles maintained therein, erator, in case the temperature prevailing in the therein eiïecting their conversion and discharg latter zone is considerably higher Athan the tem,-` 20 ing resulting vaporous conversion products‘while still under superatmospheric pressure from the perature at which it is desired to conduct the’ conversion reaction.' upper portion of the reaction zone, separately discharging catalyst particles from the lower 1.'.The process of converting Vfluid reactants portion of said reaction zone andsuspending I claim: ‘ - Y in'the presence of a mass of subdivided solid 25 the same in transporting vapors comprising a contact material which comprises directing the solid contact material downwardly in series from an uppermost separating zone through separate portion of said vaporous conversion products, directing the resulting suspension solely by the gas-lift action of said portion of vaporous con-> ' version products into a separatingr zone of sub confined 4reaction and regenerating zones, main taining' a relatively compact bed of the solid 30 stantially reduced pressure disposed at a sub particles' in each of said zones and maintaining thel downwardly moving solid particles in the `form of a continuous relatively compact column stantíal elevation above the reaction zone, said> superatmospheric pressure of said vaporous _con version products being sufficiently greater than said reduced pressure in said separating -zone to extending uninterruptedly through and between said'zones‘the static pressure at the bottom of 35 overcome'the pressure drop of the transporting vapors during their flow'from said reaction zone said column being substantially greater than the` to said separating zone, separating catalyst par pressure in said uppermost separating zone, con ticles from the transporting «vapors and collectf tacting the bed of solid particles in the regener ing the catalyst particles in the form' of a rela ating zone with regenerating gas to remove there from deleterious contaminants accumulated in 40 tively compact bed, directing catalyst particles fromjthe last named bed downwardly into a the reaction zone, contacting the bed of solid separate confined regenerating zone, therein particles in the reaction zone vwith the iiuid re actants to be converted and effecting their `conn maintaining another relatively compact bed of commingling thereof, discharging the subdivided recting the same downwardly into` said reaction catalyst particles and burningtherefrom com-. version therein, maintaining the pressure of the bustible 4contaminants accumulated in Ythe re-> 45 vaporous conversion products in said reaction action zone by passing oxidizing gas upwardlyv zone greater than the pressure in said separating through the bed, discharging resultant gaseous zone, separately removing ñuid products of re products of combustion fromvthe upper portion generation and fluid products of the conversion of the regenerating zone, separately discharging reaction from the respective regenerating and the resultant regenerated catalyst particles from reaction zones and preventing any substantial 50 the lower portion of the regenerating zone, di solid- particles at said static `pressure from the zone- for further use ‘therein in promoting the bottom of said continuous column into and sus hydrocarbon Vconversion reaction, maintaining pending the same in a stream of transporting the catalyst particles in the form Qf a relatively 55 fluid comprising a portion of said vaporous con compact continuously column extending uninter version products, directing the suspended par ruptedly from a pointin saidseparating zone to ticles solely by the gas-lift action of said trans a point below the reaction zone, the static pres porting fluid upwardly into said separating zone, sure at the bottom of said column being substan thevpressure of said vaporous conversion prod tially greater than the pressure in said separat-f ucts in said reaction zone being> sufñciently 60 ing zone, and effecting the discharge of catalyst greater than the pressure ,in said separating zone particles from the lower portion of the reaction to overcome the pressure drop of said transport zone into said transporting vapors under the ing ñuid during its flow from said reaction zone weight of said continuous column. > tosaid separating zone, separating` said trans` 65 "5. A conversion processwhich comprises pass porting ñuid from at least a major portion‘of ing subdivided solid contact material vertically the subdivided solid particles and ldirecting the downward» in the form of a relatively compact latter downwardly as aforesaid through the con-Y continuousV column extending uninterruptedly from anuppermost separating zone through and 2. A process such as defined in claim 1, wherein 70 between a plurality of superimposed contacting said fluid reactants to be converted are supplied zones, the lstatic pressure at the bottom' of said to the reaction zone by pumping them while in column being substantially greater than the> pres liquid statey and wherein iiuid conversion products sure in said uppermost separating zone, contact are discharged in essentially vaporous state and ing a hydrocarbon reactant under Yconversion at .-superatmospheric pressure; from _the 'reaction 754 conditions with the solid material in one of the tacting zones.- c , 2,407,700 last-named zones while maintaining the pressure of the vaporous conversion products therein sul@v stantially greater than the pressure in said sepa rating zone, regenerating the solid material in another of the contacting zones ‘oy passing an 5 oxygen-containing gas therethrough, discharging 10 the transporting iiuid, the pressure of said va porous conversion products in the contacting Zone being suñiciently greater than the pressure in said separating Zone to overcome the pressure drop of said transporting fluid during its fìow from the contacting zone to said separating zone, separating solid particles from transporting fluid in the separating zone, and depositing the sepa solid particles from the bottom of said contin uous column into a stream of transporting fluid comprising Vaporous conversion products of said rated particles onto the top of said column in the hydrocarbon reactant under the weight of the 10 separating zone to pass downwardly through the column and directing the same upwardly into said contacting zones as aforesaid. separating zone solely -by the gas-lift action of LYMAN C. HUFF.