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    HISTORY

    Experimental validation of the Fluidized Bed Membrane Reactor (FBMR) concept was originally carried out at the University of British Columbia and the University of Calgary, where researchers demonstrated the FBMR concept for the steam reforming reaction (SMR) on a pilot-plant scale.  This work (originally funded by the Science Council of British Columbia) resulted in the FBMR-SMR process, which is well-suited to numerous applications.

    In 1994, UBC secured a patent (US 5,326,550, Can 2,081,170) on the FBMR’s novel features.  Related later patents (US 6,331,283 and US) have extended the technology to auto-thermal reforming in a fluidized bed, and to a unique internally circulating reactor configuration.  Other patents have been submitted and are pending.

    The level of maturity and commercial potential of this technology led the founders to form MRT™ and to carry out further development, improvement and commercialization in an industrial environment.

    In 2003, MRT™ commissioned the first integrated version of its FBMR process in a demonstration reforming unit jointly designed by MRT™ and NORAM Engineering.  This alpha unit was housed at National Research Council’s Institute for Fuel Cell Innovation in Vancouver, where it was employed in a series of operational campaigns over a period of 18 months.  The results of this work were then used in the design of two subsequent in-house versions of the technology.  These in turn have provided know-how for the design and fabrication of demonstration reactors for Tokyo Gas and Linde.

    One of the key areas of activity for MRT™ has been the development of its own techniques for manufacturing hydrogen-permeable membranes and robust, functional membrane modules for use within the FBMR.  The state of this technology, including valuable IP, is now such that stand-alone purification systems have been developed for a range of pure and ultra-pure hydrogen end uses.