Process Economics Program Report 89
Hydrofluoric Acid and Fluorocarbons
Published: November 1973
This report is concerned with processes for producing anhydrous hydrofluoric acid (HF) and its principal organic derivatives, the fluorocarbons.
The production of HF from fluorspar is covered, as well as a number of recently developed (but as yet unused) processes for making HF from fluosilicic acid, a by-product of the phosphoric acid industry.
The name "fluorocarbon" literally should be used to designate a compound containing only carbon and fluorine. However, in this report the usual commercial usage is employed, whereby compounds of carbon, fluorine, hydrogen, and other halogens are included. Actually, the report is concerned principally with the three largest-volume fluorocarbon products:
- Dichlorodifluoromethane (CCl2F2, Fluorocarbon 12)
- Trichlorofluoromethane (CCl3F, Fluorocarbon 11)
- Chlorodifluoromethane (CHClF2, Fluorocarbon 22)
These three products constitute almost 95% of total industry volume. The report considers the production of fluorocarbons by the liquid phase reaction of HF and chlorinated hydrocarbons (the principal industrial process) as well as by a more recently developed process for reacting methane with chlorine and HF.