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Designing of Absorbers

Designing of Absorbers

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Published by Khaqan Amin

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: Khaqan Amin on May 11, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Heat & Mass TransferGroup # 04 Page 1
1.0 Introduction
Chemical absorption is an amine based process that is used commercially to remove acid gasimpurities from process gas streams. This is the most commonly used technology today for lowconcentration CO
capture. Chemical absorption is the most suitable method for separation of CO
from the flue gas stream.The use of absorbers has increased since 1990 because of increased concerns about gaseouscontaminants, which are classified as air toxic or volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Inaddition to stand-alone systems, absorbers are frequently used downstream of thermal andcatalytic incinerators to remove acid gases generated from the combustion of sulfur-containingand/or halogenated compounds present in the incinerator feed.For some examples of this effect, see liquid-liquid extraction. It is possible to extract from oneliquid phase to another a solute without a chemical reaction. Examples of such solutes are noblegases and osmium tetra oxide.
1.1 Definition
Absorption is the process by which atoms, molecules, or ions enter a bulk phase (liquid,gas, solid).Absorption refers to the transfer of a gaseous component from the gas phase to a liquidphase. Absorption occurs into liquid droplets dispersed in the gas stream, sheets of liquidcovering packing material, or jets of liquid within the vessel.
Heat & Mass TransferGroup # 04 Page 2
2.0 Absorbers
The equipments used for the absorption are called absorbers. They are one of the importantequipment used in industries now a day.
2.1 Types of absorbers
Spray-Tower Absorbers
Packed-Bed Absorbers
Tray-Tower Absorbers
Venture and Ejector Absorbers
Biofiltration Beds absorbers
2.2 Spray Tower Absorbers
Spray towers are the simplest devices used for gasabsorption. They consist of an open vessel and one or moresets of liquid spray nozzles to distribute the scrubbing liquid(absorbent). Typically, the flow is countercurrent, with thecontaminant gas stream entering near the bottom of the towerand flowing upward, while the liquid enters near the top andflows downward. The most dilute gas is exposed to the mostdilute liquid at the top of the column while the mostconcentrated gas and liquid are in contact near the bottom.
2.2.1 Explanation
Spray chambers can also operate in cross-current or co-current flow arrangements when there is limited space in an industrial facility. In cross-currentabsorbers, the gas flow is perpendicular to the liquid flow. In co-current absorbers, the gas and
Heat & Mass TransferGroup # 04 Page 3
liquid flow in the same direction. Because the gas stream does not “push” against the liquid
stream as in countercurrent flow, higher gas stream velocities can be used. With higher gasstream velocities, the size of the unit can be reduced. However, cross-current or co-current spraytowers are not usually as efficient as countercurrent units. The liquid is distributed through aseries of spray nozzles. Full-cone nozzles are generally used. The full-cone nozzle generates aspray pattern that completely fills the target area. The spray angle is a function of the liquidpressure in the supply header.The quantity of liquid, normally characterized by the liquid-to-gas ratio (L/G), is a key parameterin gas absorption. The (L/G) is frequently expressed in units of gallons per minute of liquiddivided by the gas flow rate in units of 1000 ACFM. Typical (L/G) ratios for spray-towerabsorbers can vary from 5 to more than 50 gallons per 1000 ACF. The (L/G) is determined bythe solubility of the contaminant in the liquid and by the mass transfer characteristics in the spraytower. Contaminant capture efficiency increases with increasing (L/G) and one important aspectof the design problem amounts to determining the optimum (L/G) required to satisfy emissionspecifications at the minimum cost.
2.2.2 Application
Spray-tower absorbers are used primarily in applications
Where the gases are extremely soluble in the absorbent,
Where high pollutant removal efficiency is not required,
Where the chemical reactions in the absorbing liquid could result in salts that could causeplugging in other types of absorber vessels.
Spray towers are also used in a number of flue gas desulfurization systems.
2.2.3 Advantages
The main advantage of spray-tower absorbers is that they are completely open.
They have no internal components except for the spray nozzles and connecting piping.
They have a very low gas-stream static pressure drop, which ranges from 1 to 3 in. W.C.(0.25 to 0.75 kPa) for the absorber vessel.
2.3 Packed-Bed Absorbers
Packed-bed absorbers are the most common absorbers used for gas removal. The absorbingliquid is dispersed over the packing material, which provides a large surface area for gas-liquidcontact. Packed beds are classified according to the relative direction of gas-to-liquid flow.

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