Ethylene Glycol Plant

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

© 2000 AEA Technology plc - All Rights Reserved. Chem 6_3.pdf

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

Workshop
Ethylene glycol has many industrial uses: a feed stock for polyester resins, a hydrate inhibitor in natural gas pipelines, an all-weather antifreeze and coolant, or an industrial solvent. Ethylene oxide and water are fed to a reactor to produce ethylene glycol. The product stream is fed to a distillation column where the excess water and ethylene oxide are stripped off the top and the ethylene glycol is the bottom product.

Learning Objectives
After completing this module, you will be able to:

• • • •

Simulate CSTR reactors Simulate an Ethylene glycol plant Use the recycle operation in HYSYS Choose suitable locations for recycles

Prerequisites
Before beginning this module, you need to be able to:

• Add and define the simulation basis, including components, property packages, and reactions. • Add streams and operations to a simulation.

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Process Overview

Column Overview

Ethylene Glycol Plant

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Building the Simulation
Defining the Simulation Basis
Start a New case and choose the NRTL Activity Model. The components are Ethylene Oxide (C2H4O), Water (H2O) and Ethylene Glycol (C2H6O2).
Fast track to page 11.

These components can be hard to find in the long list of available components in HYSYS. Use the Formula filter and type the chemical formulas given above into the Match Cell. This will help you find the desired components quickly and easily. Go to the Binary Coeffs tab. Select UNIFAC VLE as the Coeff Estimation method to estimate the missing binary coefficients and press Unknowns Only. This will estimate the coefficients for the ethylene oxide / ethylene glycol pair.

Adding the Reactions
On the Rxns tab, add the following reaction to the Fluid Package: C2H4O + H2O → C2H6O2 1. 2. To define the reaction, press the Simulation Basis Mgr button and select the Reactions tab. Add all of the Fluid Package components by selecting the Add Comps button and pressing the Add this Group of Components button in the window that appears. Press the Add Rxn button, choose Kinetic, and press the Add Reaction button.

3.

In the Stoichiometry and Rate Info group, define the reaction stoichiometry of the reaction previously stated (-1 for reactants, and 1 for product comps).

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

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Complete the Basis and Parameters pages as below: Enter...

In This Cell...
Basis Basis Base Component Rxn Phase Basis Units Rate Units Parameters Forward Reaction A E

Molar Concn C2Oxide Combined Liquid kgmole/m3 kgmole/m3-s

5.0e+06 5.0e+04

No reverse reaction is defined in this example. 5. Return to the Simulation Basis Manager by closing the Kinetic Reaction window. Return to the Rxns tab of the Fluid Package. Press the Add Set button to add the Global Rxn Set to the Current Reaction Sets group. Close the Fluid Package view. Press the Enter Simulation Environment button.

6.

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Adding the Feed streams
Add two feed streams with the following information. All compositions are entered as mole fractions In This Cell...
Conditions Name Temperature Pressure Molar Flow Composition C2Oxide H2O EGlycol 1.0 0.0 0.0 EOx Feed 25°C (77°F) 120 kPa (17.4 psia) 105 kgmole/h (230 lbmole/hr)

Enter...

Conditions Name Temperature Pressure Molar Flow Composition C2Oxide H2O EGlycol 0.0 1.0 0.0 Water Feed 25°C (77°F) 120 kPa (17.4 psia) 150 kgmole/h (330 lbmole/hr)

Save your case!

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

Adding the Unit Operations
CSTR Reactor
Add a CSTR operation and enter the following information. Be sure to assign the Global Rxn Set as the Reaction Set for the separator to model the reactor. In This Cell...
Connections Name Inlets Reactor EOx Feed Water Feed Vapour Outlet Liquid Outlet Energy Parameters Pressure Drop Volume 10 kPa (1.5 psi) 2 m3 (71 ft3) Rx Vapour Rx Liquid Rx Coolant

CSTR button

Enter...

1. 2.

On the Reactions tab, select the Global Rxn Set and Rxn-1 as the Reaction. Specify the temperature of stream Rx Liquid to be 65°C (150°F).

From the Reaction results, what is the % Conversion of Ethylene Oxide? __________

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

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Ethylene Glycol Tower
The Ethylene Glycol tower will be modelled as a Distillation Column. Add the column with the following information: In This Cell...
Connections Name No. of Stages Inlet Condenser Type Ovhd Vapour Ovhd Liquid Bottoms Liquid Condenser Energy Reboiler Energy Pressures Condenser Condenser Delta P Reboiler Specs Vapour Rate Reflux Ratio Reboiler Temperature 0.0 kgmole/h (0.0 lbmole/hr) 3.0 150°C (300°F) 100 kPa (14.5 psia) 0 kPa (0 psi) 105 kPa (15 psia) T-100 10 Rx Liquid, Stage 5 Partial Vent Distillate Bottoms Product Cond Duty Reboiler Duty

Enter...

Note: HYSYS generates column temperature estimates if none are provided.

Save your case!

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

Installing the Recycle
A Recycle operation is a mathematical unit operation and is installed as any other. It has an inlet (calculated) stream and an outlet (assumed) stream. The operation is called/calculated whenever changes to the inlet stream fall outside of the converged tolerance. The Recycle installs a theoretical block in the process stream. The feed into the block is termed the calculated recycle stream, and the product is the assumed recycle stream. The following steps take place during the convergence process

In general, a Recycle operation is required for material transfer and not for thermal recycles. Always supply a guess or starting point for the outlet stream of the Recycle, never the inlet. A guess close to the solution will result in a faster convergence time.

• HYSYS uses the conditions of the assumed stream (outlet) and solves the flowsheet up to the calculated stream (inlet). • HYSYS then compares the values of the calculated stream to those in the assumed stream. • Based on the difference between the values, HYSYS modifies the values in the calculated stream and passes the modified values to the assumed stream.
The calculation process repeats until the values in the calculated stream match those in the assumed stream within specified tolerances.

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

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Recycle the Water Stream
The stream Distillate contains mostly unreacted water. This water can be recycled to the reactor in order to reduce the feed water requirements (as well as eliminate a waste stream).
Open the case OptRecy.hsc

Install a Recycle block operation. The inlet stream is the Distillate and the outlet stream should be mixed with the pure Water Feed stream, before entering the Reactor. Delete the specified molar flow rate of the Water Feed stream. This value will be back-calculated from the outlet of the mixer. Specify the molar flow of the mixer outlet stream, Water to Reactor, as 150 kgmole/h (330 lbmole/hr). Once the flow rate in this stream is set, HYSYS will automatically calculate the flowrate of the Water Feed stream. If we had not deleted the specified value, HYSYS would report a consistency error, because a the two values would be in conflict with each other. What value does HYSYS calculate for the flowrate of the stream "Water Feed"? __________

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

Parameters tab
Tolerance page

The smaller the tolerance value, the tighter the tolerance. Generally it is a good idea to start with the default tolerance until you have a converged solution and then tighten the tolerance.

HYSYS allows you to set the convergence criteria or tolerance for each of the Recycle variables. In this example, leave everything at the default.

Numerical Page
This page contains the options for the two types of Recycles, Nested and Simultaneous.

• Nested - this type of recycle gets called whenever it is encountered during calculations. Use this type if you have a single Recycle or if you have multiple recycles which are not connected. • Simultaneous - all recycles set at Simultaneous will be called at the same time. Use this option if your Flowsheet has multiple inter-connected recycles.
Change the Maximum Iterations number to 20.

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Monitor tab
This page displays convergence information as the calculations are performed. Any variable that changes between iterations is displayed in this table.

Worksheet tab
The Recycle WorkSheet page displays the Inlet and Outlet stream information. In this instance, notice that the Inlet and Outlet streams have the same values. This is because before we installed the Recycle, the Inlet stream was already calculated by HYSYS. When the Recycle was connected, the known Inlet conditions were automatically passed to the Outlet stream to serve as the starting guess.

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

Exploring with the Simulation
Exercise 1
Create a Case Study to plot the Ethylene Glycol molar flow in the liquid product against the Reactor Outlet Temperature. The temperature range can be between 45 and 110 °C (100 and 240 °F), with a step of 10 °C (20 °F). Be sure to "Ignore" the Recycle operation before starting the Case Study. What temperature produces the maximum Ethylene Glycol flow? __________ What problems will be encountered if the temperature exceeds approximately 115 oC? __________ Remember to save the file under a different name if you wish to save it!

Exercise 2
Set up an Adjust operation to make sure the molar flow of Ethylene Glycol in the Rx Liquid stream is equal to 110 kgmole/h (240 lbmole/ hr), by adjusting the EOx Feed molar flow with a step size of 1 kgmole/h (2 lbmole/hr). What EtOx feed rate is required to produce the specified molar flow of Ethylene Glycol? __________

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

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Advanced Modelling
Because the Recycle operation is a mathematical representation of a physical process, its location in a simulation is a particularly important one. The location of the tear stream can often determine success or failure to converge a recycle

Choose a Tear Location to Minimize the Number of Recycles
Reducing the number of locations where the iterative process is required will save on the total convergence time. Choosing the location of the Recycle will depend on the Flowsheet topology. Attempt to choose a point such that specifying the assumed stream will define as many streams downstream as possible. It generally occurs downstream of gathering points (mixers) and upstream of distribution points (tees, separators, and columns).

Choose a Tear Location to Minimize the Number of Recycle Variables
Variables include vapour fraction, temperature, pressure, flow, enthalpy and composition. Choose the tear stream so that as many variables as possible are fixed, thus effectively eliminating them as variables and increasing convergence stability. Good choices for these locations are at separator inlets, compressor after cooler outlets and trim heater outlets.

A very poor choice of a tear stream is a stream with an Adjust operation controlling one of its variables.

Choose a Stable Tear Location
The tear locations can be chosen such that fluctuations in the recycle stream have a minimal effect. For example, by placing the tear in a main stream, instead of the physical recycle, the effect of fluctuations will be reduced. The importance of this factor depends on the convergence algorithm. It is more significant when successive substitution is used.

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

Recycle Exercises
Choosing the Right Location
When installing Recycle operations in a HYSYS simulation, it is vital that right location for the operation be chosen. Several guidelines were given on a previous page, and several different problems will be given here. Note that some of these flowsheet may require more than one Recycle operation.

Flowsheet 1
Where should the Recycle be placed in this flowsheet and why? Assume that you know the following information:

• • • • •

Temperature and Vapour Fraction of "Cond Out". Pressure drop and Duty of "Chiller" operation. Pressure of "Chiller Out" stream. Pressure drop of "Condenser" Operation. The Mixer is set to "equalize all."

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

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Flowsheet 2
Where should the Recycle be placed in this flowsheet and why? Assume that the Feed is fully defined, Shell and Tube Side pressure drops are known, as well as the Column Feed temperature.

Flowsheet 3
Where should the Recycle be placed in this flowsheet and why? Assume the Feed is completely defined, shell and tube side pressure drops for E-100 and E-101, and the temperatures of streams 3 and 4 are known.

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Ethylene Glycol Plant

Flowsheet 4
Where should the Recycle be placed in this flowsheet and why? Assume the Feed is completely defined, and the shell and tube side pressure drop for E-100 is known.

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