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PROSIMPLUS APPLICATION EXAMPLE

LPG RECOVERY UNIT
USING PROPANE REFRIGERATION

INTEREST OF THIS EXAMPLE
This example shows a process of LPG recovery in a gas with a propane refrigeration loop. This process is particularly inter-connected and includes several recycling loops. Additionally, beside the implementation of the absorber module and of the refrigeration loop, this process uses the plate fin heat exchanger module of ProSimPlus, a particularly complex unit operation. This type of exchangers can include as many as 10 different streams which renders the modeling and the associated calculation particularly complex.

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Reader is reminded that this use case is only an example and should not be used for other purposes. Although this example is based on actual case it may not be considered as typical nor are the data used always the most accurate available. ProSim shall have no responsibility or liability for damages arising out of or related to the use of the results of calculations based on this example.

Copyright © 2010 ProSim, Labège, France - All rights reserved

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1. 1. France . Process description Heat exchanger description Process flowsheet Specifications Components Thermodynamic model Operating conditions "Hints and Tips" 3 3 3 6 7 7 7 7 10 11 11 11 12 12 14 RESULTS 2. Labège. 1.1.All rights reserved www. 1.net .8.6.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 2 / 14 TABLE OF CONTENTS 1. 2. PROCESS MODELING 1. 2.5.4. 2. REFERENCES Copyright © 2010 ProSim. 1.4.2.prosim.3.1.3. 2. 1.7. Comments on results Mass and energy balances Profile of temperature of reference sheet in the E101 exchanger Column C101 composition profiles 3.2. 1.

The gas propane (stream C12) is mixed with hot streams of propane leaving the brazed plate fin heat exchanger (E101). This column is set to recover at the bottom. a liquid having the specified mass fraction of methane. ProSec. Copyright © 2010 ProSim. Heat exchanger description This process implements a plate-fin heat exchanger (E101). The main LPG components are hydrocarbons (mainly in the C3-C4 range). it is increasingly used in cryogenic processes. A liquid-gas mixture is formed and sent in a separator (S104). Another ProSim software. The initial gas mixture is sent in a two-phase separator (S101) in order to eliminate the heaviest compounds which are sent to the distillation column (C101). makes it possible to bypass this assumption for even more accurate calculations. Once treated.2. Liquid propane is returned in the plate-fin heat exchanger (streams C05in and C06in). from a gas mixture. On the outlet side of the plate-fin heat exchanger. PROCESS MODELING 1. is sent in a deethanizer column (C101). Thanks to its low cost of production and its high performances (they are generally made of brazed aluminum).1. The single assumption made is of a common wall temperature off stacking (known as TPC assumption). They are then forwarded in another two-phase separator (S102) to separate heavy and lights. The others leave at the top of the vessel and are cooled in the brazed plate fin heat exchanger (E101).All rights reserved www.prosim. 1. The model implemented in ProSimPlus is a detailed model which takes account all the complexity of the geometry of this type of exchangers. Propane circulates in closed loop in the system where it acts as a refrigerant. Process description The objective of this process is to recover LPG (liquefied petroleum gases) with a fixed mass fraction of methane.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 3 / 14 1. Labège.net . they are mixed and sent in a compressor (K101) which increases their pressure and their temperature. not entirely liquefied. France . The main cold streams of the plate-fin heat exchanger are the two propane streams (C05out and C06out). The gas. propane and butane. like the bottom stream of the first two-phase separator. the gas is mainly composed of methane and ethane and flows out of the exchanger (stream C04out). Only one of these exchangers can contain more than ten different streams. The heat generated is recovered in an exchanger (E102). Propane then flows in an expansion valve (v101) in order to decrease its pressure. The example is extracted from [1]. The two output streams (heavy and light) are sent back in the plate-fin heat exchanger as cold streams.

The main stream (C02) flows throughout the heat exchanger.prosim.net . shared by the hot and cold streams. France .LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 4 / 14 The heat exchanger can be summarized in the figure below: The exchanger is composed of three references paths. the secondary streams are withdrawn (C05. 40 layers 20 layers 10 layers Copyright © 2010 ProSim. Labège. C06) or fed (C03.All rights reserved www. C04) on the side of the unit.

LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 5 / 14 The figures below present the fins used for the several flow paths in the heat exchanger as well as their topology (exchange. Only one fin is used in this example (Fin #2873 from Fives Cryo (formerly called Nordon Cryogénie)): Copyright © 2010 ProSim.prosim.net . France .All rights reserved www. distribution and dead zones). Labège.

prosim. Labège. Process flowsheet LPG recovery unit process flowsheet Copyright © 2010 ProSim.net .All rights reserved www.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 6 / 14 1. France .3.

4.014024 0.016791 0. This constraint is set in the column (C101) configuration window (“Objectives / Constraints” tab). Thermodynamic model The thermodynamic model is based on an equation of state approach.7.020351 0. The chosen equation of state is the Peng Robinson (PR) [2] equation with binary interaction parameters extracted from the ProSimPlus database.000228 0. Components The components taken into account in the simulation are extracted from the standard data base provided with ProSimPlus.044816 0. These components are defined in the table hereafter: Nitrogen Methane Ethane Propane Isobutane n-Butane Isopentane n-Pentane n-Hexane n-Heptane 1.8 Copyright © 2010 ProSim.141162 0.031937 115 833 26297.prosim.040548 0.6.591275 0.net . France .098868 0. Operating conditions Process feed Temperature (F) Pressure (psi) Total mass throughput (lb/h) Mass fractions Nitrogen Methane Ethane Propane Isobutane n-Butane Isopentane n-Pentane n-Hexane n-Heptane 0. 1. Labège. Specifications The constraint of this process is to recover LPG with a mass fraction of methane equal to 0.05.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 7 / 14 1.5. 1.All rights reserved www.

Labège.2 Value Plate fin heat exchanger 1 5 70 Aluminum Horizontal Fives Cryo 2873 2.prosim.25 1 see § 1.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 8 / 14 Heat Exchanger E101 Operating parameters Type of exchanger Number of exchanger blocks Number of pathes Total passage numbers Design material Position of the exchanger Fins Porosity (%) Heat transfer coefficient (W/m2/K) Fouling coefficient (W/m2/K) Geometry Exchange width (in) Parting sheets thickness (in) Outside sheets thickness (in) Side bars thickness (in) Paths description 18 0. France .5 Constant = 1000 0 Separator S101 Operating parameters Type of separator Temperature (F) Pressure (psi) Value Vapor-Liquid separator 113 inlet pressure Separator S102 Operating parameters Type of separator Temperature (F) Pressure (psi) Value Vapor-Liquid separator -5 inlet pressure Separator S103 Operating parameters Type of separator Value Vapor-Liquid separator Copyright © 2010 ProSim.All rights reserved www.1 0.net .

All rights reserved Value Two-phase absorber with reboiler 30 10 1200 www.5 Column C101 Operating parameters Type of column Number of theoretical stages Feed stage Vapor flowrate at the top of column (lb/h) Copyright © 2010 ProSim.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 9 / 14 Temperature (F) Pressure (psi) Pressure drop (psi) Temperature resulting of the adiabatic mixing of the feeds Lowest pressure of the feeds 9 Compressor K101 Operating parameters Exhaust pressure (psi) Isentropic efficiency Mechanical efficiency Value 258 0.prosim. France . Labège.net .72 1 Exchanger E102 Operating parameters Type of exchanger Output temperature (F) Value Cooler/Heater -7 Valve V101 Operating parameters Type of valve Pressure (psi) Value Expansion valve 227 Valve V102 Operating parameters Type of valve Splitting rate Value Stream splitter 0.

net . Action Vapor distillate flowrate 1. Copyright © 2010 ProSim. In order to modify the refrigeration efficiency it will be necessary to modify this initialization of the flowrate of C10. "Hints and Tips" The propane refrigeration loop can operate with an unspecified circulating propane flowrate. here the stream C10 was selected.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 10 / 14 Additional column specification: Specification 1: Purity Type of product Bottom liquid product Component Methane Value 0.All rights reserved www.prosim. Type wt. In order to set the flowrate of propane circulating in the loop it is necessary to initialize one of the streams of the loop. as it is a closed loop (the flow among C07 and the flow of C13 exit are equal). Labège. France .8.05 Phase Liq.

0168 0.0094 0.1170 0.net .0507 0.4002 262.0000 0.0029 0.5416 480.0000 32.6031 -448957.6155 0.0436 0.All rights reserved www.6221 2570.7874 0. France . The streams C10 (see § 1.1964 25450.1002 455.0000 0.9766 -281235.8169 1108.1208 0.0033 0.5636 825./Vap.0224 0.5612 535.7) and C02out are initialized.0144 0.5467 -8.2470 1066.1421 0.9874 15497.1602 C07 C15 C16 M101 C101 C101 S103 C1-C2 Output LPG Output lb/h lb/h lb/h 0.6785 426.0204 0.0149 0.9998 31.7673 691.1. mass and energy balances are provided for every stream. Labège.9959 15549.9335 1.6050 2192.0502 -816587.3223 1178.2738 0.4969 10.2722 39.8181 1014.3245 875. In ProSimPlus.0448 0.0000 1.0659 C03out E101 Gas Output lb/h 5.0004 0.prosim.0714 0.8500 112.6187 1587.3294 111.0000 1041.5660 839. 2.0000 832.0534 0.1954 0.0000 20.8249 7250.5642 3615.3715 18199.0000 0.0399 0.0760 0.9893 1.0476 1796.1038 0.9057 C04out E101 C101 lb/h 0.4461 330.7388 448. Streams From To Partial flowrate NITROGEN METHANE ETHANE PROPANE ISOBUTANE n-BUTANE ISOPENTANE n-PENTANE n-HEXANE n-HEPTANE Total flowrate Mass fractions NITROGEN METHANE ETHANE PROPANE ISOBUTANE n-BUTANE ISOPENTANE n-PENTANE n-HEXANE n-HEPTANE Physical state Temperature Pressure Enthalpy Vapor fraction lb/h C01 Process feed S101 lb/h 5. RESULTS 2.0000 0.9994 112.8631 53.3524 0.0189 0.0130 0.9908 134.9998 832.4435 ° F psi Btu/h 0.0000 Copyright © 2010 ProSim.1902 1285.6089 0.1413 0.3405 326.8520 293.0140 0.0500 0.1722 834. Results are also available at the unit operation level (result tab in the configuration window).6596 93.0088 3712.0002 0.0034 0.7265 507.0000 0.9998 832.4924 232.0514 0.0196 0.9998 832.5745 773.2190 2600.6990 348.5466 185.9998 -449992.0000 0.1773 0.0771 0.0680 0.4885 32.1067 0. Vapor Liquid 114.8992 295./Vap.9492 320.9588 0.0066 0.1399 Liq.1861 368.0405 0./Vap.0000 7.0589 0.2316 0.8560 1616.5259 0. Liq.5913 0.2.0000 0.6876 315.7809 0.0018 0.0045 0. Mass and energy balances This document presents only the most relevant stream results.2798 0.0000 0.1010 0.4490 421.0000 0.0002 0.4795 -71422.0405 0.1655 -383353.0626 27.0043 0.0128 0.3296 6.8000 441.5698 0.9998 832.4294 5905.0989 0.8722 26297.0006 0.2898 5828.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 11 / 14 2.5950 9 3.7326 499. Comments on results The calculation sequence (order of calculation of the unit operations) is generated automatically.0001 0.9665 0.0319 0.7972 14212.0872 0.0003 0.9994 94.4455 -380826. Vapor Vapor Liq.7786 C02in S101 E101 lb/h 5.0000 0.4752 0.9371 6030.4030 492.0442 0.9455 2028.4179 752.9031 832.0987 0.1588 0.0128 0.0000 9.0000 0.1412 0.

A double-click on the selected profile generate the graph. in ProSimPlus. It is important to note that.4.3.All rights reserved www. in the “Profiles” tab.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 12 / 14 2. first stage correspond to condenser and last stage to reboiler (numbering from top to bottom). Copyright © 2010 ProSim. Double clicking on the profile will generate the corresponding graph.Temperature profile of the reference sheet Temperature (° F) 120 100 80 60 40 20 0 1 -20 2 3 Length (ft) Temperature profile of the reference sheet 4 5 6 2.net . Profile of temperature of reference sheet in the E101 exchanger Temperature profiles in the heat exchanger are available after the simulation from the exchanger configuration window (profile tab). France . Labège. E101 . Column C101 composition profiles Composition profiles can be accessed after the simulation in each column configuration window.prosim.

02 0.28 0.30 0.12 0.18 0.04 0. France .06 0.All rights reserved www.22 0.00 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 Stage NITROGEN n-BUTANE METHANE ISOPENTANE ETHANE n-PENTANE PROPANE n-HEXANE ISOBUTANE n-HEPTANE Liquid mass-fractions profile in the column Copyright © 2010 ProSim. Labège.prosim.08 0.Temperature profile Temperature (° F) 200 180 160 140 120 100 80 0 10 Stage 20 30 Temperature profile in the column C101 liquid mass-fraction C101 .14 0.Liquid mass-fractions Mass-fraction 0.10 0.16 0.net .20 0.26 0.24 0.LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 13 / 14 C101 temperature profile C101 .

Robinson D. REFERENCES [1] Polasek J.. Fundam.prosim.T.A. 59-64 (1976) Copyright © 2010 ProSim. Labège..net . Bullin J. France . 1. 15. "A new two constant equation of state" I.C. OK : Gas Processors Association..C..LPG Recovery Using Propane Refrigeration Version: January 2010 Page: 14 / 14 3.All rights reserved www.E.B. 1989 : 100-106 [2] Peng Y.D. Donnelly S. “Process Simulation and Optimization of Cryogenic Operations Using Multi-Stream Brazed Aluminium Exchangers” Proceedings of the Sixty-Eighth GPA Annual Convention Tulsa.