Unique solution for filling process: Feed Valve

Tuesday July 8, 2014 15:38

ECN has developed the innovative Feed Valve. This is a mechanism by which solids, liquids, gases and mixtures can be pumped into a pressurised reactor vessel quickly and accurately. The patented Feed Valve is an ideal solution for various industrial processes.

Feed Valve is an alternative to the inlet valve (or 'load locks') in high-pressure installations. The mechanism can be tailored to different types of installations, including coal gasifiers, freeze drying installations or installations where dust is produced (such as filtering systems). Companies that optimise their filling process with the Feed Valve can save millions of euros.

Cost-savings and process optimisation
Till now, load locks with a space for the actual reactor have been used extensively. Here the filler material is introduced safely into the reactor, at a low pressure. A laborious process, because the material may remain inside and the load lock must always be treated with a purge gas. ECN's Feed Valve mechanism offers a solution to this. Without disrupting the process, an accurate dose of the filler material is pumped into a process installation under pressure. This simplifies the filling process and avoids disruption of the process and any waste or leakage.

How does it work?
The Feed Valve works as follows: a valve housing contains a ball and a movable piston with a piston stroke. Feed in the liquid, solid or the gas from the top. Close the valve and turn the ball 180 degrees, as a result of which the material is, as it were, pushed into the reactor chamber. Turn the ball back up again to feed in new material. Since the ball surface is sealed by the piston, no process gas is taken along when returning to the feed mode.

Application of patented technology
ECN has developed a prototype and obtained a patent on its unique Feed Valve mechanism. For the industrial application of Feed Valve, we are looking for partners who see opportunities to use this in their installations. 


  • The dimensions are similar to that of standard commercial sealing systems, allowing easy integration; 
  • Design according to the Pressure Equipment Directive;
  • Pressure value > 50 bar (g);
  • Temperatures > 200°C;
  • Sizes from DN25 to DN400 possible;

For more specifications, download the Feed Valve Technology offer.

Are you interested in the Feed Valve or want to know how the mechanism fits in your installation? Marco Klitsie of ECN would be happy to tell you more.

Category: Juli, Technology transfer