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135092944 Catalytic Distillation Modelling and Simulation Using HYSYS

135092944 Catalytic Distillation Modelling and Simulation Using HYSYS

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Published by: 09021982 on May 04, 2013
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Catalytic Distillation Modelling and Simulation using HYSYS.Process
Gheorghe BUMBAC
, Grigore BOZGA
, Valentin PLESU
, Vasile BOLOGA
, Ilie. MUJA
andCorneliu Dan POPESCU
University “POLITEHNICA” of Bucharest, Department of Chemical Engineering, 1 PolizuStreet, RO-78126, Bucharest, Romania, Tel/Fax:+40 (0)21 21.25.125, email:cttip@chim.upb.ro
S.N.P. PETROM, INCERP Ploiesti Subsidiary, B-dul Republicii Nr. 291 A, RO-2000, Jud.Prahova, Telefon +40 (0)244 135111, Fax +40 (0)244 198732, email: popescu@serv.incerp.ro
The catalytic-distillation process for the production of 
-amyl-methyl-ether (TAME) frommethanol and isoamylenes was simulated by developing the process model as acombination of unit operations from HYSYS
operations palette. Geometricalcharacteristics of catalytic-distillation column are those of an industrial pilot plant and theresults of simulation were compared with experimental data. The experimentallydetermined reactions kinetics was applied in the model. UNIQUAC-UNIFAC modelequations were selected for the vapour-liquid equilibrium.The results show that fair agreements between the calculated and experimental data wereobtained.
Methyl ethers replace lead compounds in gasoline. One of these ethers obtained by theetherification of an isoamylenes mixture (2-methyl-1-butene, 2M1B, and 2-methyl-2-butene)with methanol is
-amyl-methyl-ether (TAME).Catalytic distillation is a suitable technique for TAME synthesis due to thereversibility of the etherification reactions and the difference between the reactants and products volatilities. These particularities favours the enhancement of the reactant conversionand the increase of the interphase mass transfer potential.Despite of the important number of publications in the field of catalytic distillation,relatively few of them concern the industrial application of TAME synthesis.In this paper we focused on the relevance of the commercial software HYSYS
fothe simulation of catalytic distillation problems. To predict the behaviour of TAME synthesisreactor and reactive distillation column HYSYS.Process environment was used. Thesimulation results were compared with pilot plant experimental data. The pilot plant systemconsists mainly from a tubular, fixed bed pre-reactor (TFBR) and a reactive distillation (RD) packed column.The purpose of this study is:
to develop a suitable simulation module for heterogeneous RD with HYSYS and
to apply the model to an industrial applications.The TFBR is used to bring the reaction mixture near its equilibrium composition. Theadvantage of using a pre-reactor for TAME synthesis is based on the fact that the greatest partof reaction components can react before RD column and the throughput of reaction systemincreases.HYSYS
provides many built-in modules for simulating various processes.Unfortunately the COLUMN subflowsheet environment allows simulation of RD withreactions taking places only in homogeneous phase. In the heterogeneous catalytic distillation process the solid catalyst particles are placed into many special packing envelopes, servingalso as vapour-liquid contacting. The reactions occur inside the catalytic package where theliquid contacts the catalyst particles. Then the product flows out of the catalytic zone.Additional separation takes place on the packing placed below and above the reaction sectionof the column.
In a RD column the reaction and separation actually take place in the differentlocations of the column i.e. reaction on the catalyst pellets of the packaging and separation inthe inert packing. Therefore, the parameters of the liquid residence time or the liquid hold-upon the trays or packings in the heterogeneous process can only be used in the separationcalculation whereas the reaction calculation needs the parameters of contacting time of liquidwith catalyst in the catalytic package. We underline that in the current version of HYSYS
the built-in RD module is not directly suitable for the simulation of the heterogeneouscatalytic distillation process.To overcome the above problem our study concentrated to develop a model for heterogeneous RD and implement the model in the HYSYS simulation environment. In thismodel, the catalyst space velocity appearing in the reaction system equations represents thecontacting time of liquid with catalyst.
2. Reaction kinetics and thermodynamics
Industrial processes for TAME synthesis are based on the reversible reactions of isoamylenes (2M1B and 2M2B) with methanol. The equilibrium conversion of isoamylenesto TAME, at 60°C, is 56% if stoechiometric amounts of isoamylenes and methanol are used
and increases slightly with the increase of methanol/isoamylenes ratio. In Table 1 theequilibrium conversion as a function of temperature, for stoechiometric methanol/isoamylenesmolar ratio, is presented
.A typical industrial process for TAME synthesis involves at least 8 components:isoamylenes,
-pentane, methanol,
-pentene and
-2-pentene. Since methanolassociates almost all hydrocarbon components into simple and complex azeotropic pairs, thesystem shows strong non-ideal properties.The property package used to calculate the liquid activities of the consideredcomponents is based on UNIQUAC-UNIFAC model.
Table 1. Equilibrium isoamylenes conversionas a function of temperature
C)Conversion50 0.61860 0.56070 0.49180 0.446
The two reactive olefins (2M1B and 2M2B) are contained in the hydrocarbon mixture,resulted as a C5 fraction from Fluid Catalytic Cracking (FCC) unit. In Table 2 thecomposition of the feeding mixture used in the simulated process scheme is presented.Residual TAME is present in this stream from recycled stream. All components from the C5fraction are producing azeotropes with methanol and the composition of these azeotropes is presented in Table 3. The methanol concentration in these azeotropes increases with pressure.
Table 2. The feed composition.
Table 3. Azeotrope compositions in TAME synthesis.
 p=2.5 barp=4 barp=5.5 bar Component 1Component 2x1t,
Cmethanol2M1B0.2153.760.24369.240.26880.07methanol2M2B0.2858.690.3173.780.33184.69methanoln-pentane0.29558.640.32873.960.34785.20methanoli-pentane0.2151.220.25266.610.28077.85methanol1-pentene0.2253.640.26769.060.28380.75methanol2-pentene0.26556.730.30172.290.32282.72methanolTAME0.76387.560.793102.450.802113.20The synthesis of TAME from methanol and isoamylenes, catalysed by acid ion-exchangeresin catalyst is a reversible process as shown in following reaction mechanism containing themain and secondary reactions (1
)1()l(3CH2CHTAME3CH|3CHO|C3CH)B1M2(Butene1Methyl2 )l(OH3CH)l(3CH2CH3CH|C2CH
)2()l(3CH2CHTAME3CH|3CHO|C3CH)B2M2(Butene2Methyl2 )l(OH3CH)l(3CHCH3CH|C3CH
B2M2B1M2 )3()l(3CHCH3CH|C3CH)l(3CH2CH3CH|C2CH
amyleneisodi)l(20 H10CB2M2 )l(10 H5CB1M2 )l(10 H5C
amyleneisodi)l(20 H10CB2M2 )l(10 H5CB2M2 )l(10 H5C
ether methyldi)6()l(O2H)l(3CHO3CH)l( OH3CH2
alcoholamyltertamylenesiso )7()l(O12H5CO2H)l(10H5C
There are three main reactions (reactions 1
3, one for etherification of 2M1B, one for etherification of 2M2B and an isomerisation reaction between 2M1B and 2M2B) and four secondary reactions (4
7). Both etherification reactions, (1) and (2), are exothermic, i.e. theequilibrium conversion of TAME decreases with temperature. The isomerisation reaction atoperation temperature (between 60°C and 120°C) favours the 2M2B formation and thiscomponent will have the greatest concentration in the reaction mixture. From kinetic point of 

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