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Steam reforming

The hydrocarbon steam reforming process is the principal industrial process used to manufacture synthesis gas for the production of ammonia, hydrogen and methanol. The heart of this process is the tubular steam reformer where the hydrocarbon feed plus steam is catalytically reacted to produce the synthesis gas. In a tubular steam reformer, the feed stream passes over the catalyst packed in multiple banks of externally heated tubes. The tubes are heated in a refractory lined firebox which may be top, side, or bottom fired. The feed flow can be down flow or up flow through the tubes. With improvements in tube metallurgy, Steam reformers operate at pressure up to 60 bar and tube wall temperatures up to 1000oC. The average heat flux may be as high as 30,000 Btu/hr.ft2. The feedstock may vary as natural gas, LPG, or naphtha. The following is Süd-Chemie’s standard steam reforming catalyst for above application:

ReforMax 330 LDP is a non-potash primary reforming catalyst, used in light to medium hydrocarbon feedstock. The original name is G-90 LDP. When combining with potash based catalyst type, the ReforMax 330 LDP is placed at the bottom section for down flow reformer type.

ReforMax 210 LDP is potassium promoted primary reforming catalyst, used in typical feedstock of heavy hydrocarbon and LPG. The original name is G-91 LDP. When combining with non-potash based catalyst type, the ReforMax 210 LDP is placed at the top section for down flow reformer type.

ReforMax@ 250 is potassium promoted hydrocarbon reforming catalyst, used for reforming naphtha feedstock. The original name is C11-NK. When combining with non-potash based catalyst type, the ReforMax 210 LDP is placed at the top section for down flow reformer type.


The combination of ReforMax 330 LDP and ReforMax 210 LDP or ReforMax 250 catalysts is applied at the system no pre-reformer reactor upstream steam reformer. In case the reforming system is provided with pre-reformer reactor, installing ReforMax 330 LDP catalyst alone is acceptable.

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