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Gravity Pressure Autoclave




High pressures and temperatures are increasing the chemical reaction speed.


For this reason an autoclave is a common tool to enhance processes.

An autoclave is a vessel, where pressure and temperatures are increased, so chemical reactions are proceeding much faster.

Autoclaves are used in many processes, including metalproduction, oil refining and the production synthetic materials.

A Gravity Pressure Vessel (GPV) is a special kind of autocalve with a built in heat exchanger.

The pressure is build up by the gravity.

For these two reasons is the energy consumption in a GPV only a fraction of the traditional design.


A GPV is not suitable for all the materials, but is specially designed for liquid processes (especially slurry processes).


The first patents of the GPV technique are applied in 1981 by mister McGrew  ( US4281383)

He designed the unique technique.

Based on his ideas, totally tree reactors were build, two in the USA and the last one in the Netherlands.


The reactor in the Netherlands operated ten years and one off the owners off Innovation Concepts B.V., mister Pol Knops was involved in the design, building and operating off the Vertech reactor in Apeldoorn.


Basically it consists of a long vertical U-tube, which enters deep into the formation.

The depth depends on the kind of process; the deeper you go, the higher the pressure and the longer the residence time.


The essence of this technique is that, by using gravity, a very efficient process is designed.


Energy decreases of 90% are common, the quality of the products are better (as a reactor is a true plug flow reactor).


The reaction heat and speed at many exothermic reactions are too low for an efficient process.

High temperature and pressure are required and must be added.


At a GPV , more then 70% of the heat stays in the system and is continiously "recycled".

So even at very low exothermic reactions, it’s still possible to achieve an high end temperature without any external energy input.   

Due to the excellent heat exchanger the pressure / temperature can be optimized.

More then 70 % off the energy stays in the system, many times it’s possible to produce energy instead of a big amount of energy consumption.


A lot off different GPV techniques are designed for metal-ore upgrading, waste treatment, Carbonisation (CO2 binding by minerals) and Energy Production (Oil-Shale and Tarsand).


Innovation Concepts has patents on several GPV purpose and designed different kind of GPV installations.



Designing the GPV, there are some limits:

  • Residence time maximal 2 hours
  • Maximum pressure 200 bar.
  • Maximum temperature 500 degrees Celsius
  • Only Aqueous  reactions

There are several kinds of applications

1)      Waste treatment

1)      Metal-ore

2)      Carbonisation of natural minerals.

3)      Minerals from industrial residue’s 

4)      Energy Production

5)      Mine Tailings

6)      Tar sand / oilshale reactor



link to : GPV technical chapter

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