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# class and home problems

Th e object of this col umn is to enh ance our readers ' collecti on of interesting and novel problems
in chemic al engineering. Problems of the type that can be used to moti vate th e student by presenting
a particular principle in class, or in a newlight, or that can be assigned as a novel home problem, are
request ed as well as tho se that are more traditional in nature, which el ucidate dif f icult concepts.
Pl ease submi t th em toProfessorJam es o. Wil kes andProfessor T. c.Papon as tasiou, ChEDepartment,
Universit y of Michigan, Ann Arbor, M148109.
AMUNDSON'S MATRIX METHOD
FOR BINARY DISTILLATION REVISITED
J.J.J. CHEN
University ofAuckland
Auckland, New Zealand
Further, 1'1 and 1'2' t he root s of Eq. (3), will also
sat is fy Eq. (5). Th us
Eqs. (5) , (6), and (7) will be applied to binary distill a-
tion. However, fir st we need to formalize some of
Amundson 's treatment.
A mundson' !' expressed t he binary dist illat ion prob-
~ lem as a matrix difference equat ion. In t his
pa per, matrix power equations wi ll be used to solve
and simplify t he same problem, making it suitable
for illustrating t he ap plication of matrices in courses
of engineering math emat ics or separations processes.
rt = a.r
l
+ P
rJ = a.
r
2 + P
(6)
(7)
SOME RELATIONSHIPS IN MATRICES
Cons ider the matrix A of or de r 2:
A = [ a
l
a
2
] (1)
b
I
b
2
whose characteristic equation, IA - rIl = 0, is
l a ~ ~ r b : ~ rl= 0 (2)
or
r2 _(aI+ b2) r +( a Ib2- a2 bI)= 0 (3)
where I is the unit matrix of t he or der of A. From the
Cayley-Hamilto n t heorem, the matr ix A also satis-
fies its own characteristic equatio n. Thus
A
2
- (a
l
+ b2) A +(a Ib2 - a2 bl ) I = 0 (4)
where 0 is t he zero matrix of t he or der of A.
By using equations like Eq . (4) for higher powers
and substituting from t he lower power equations, it
can be shown t hat
(5)
where a an d p are numerical constants which de-
pend on the matrix A and expone nt p.
Copyr ight ChE Division. ASEE 1991
50
BINARY DISTILLATION
Following Amundson , by assu ming constant vola-
ti lity, the equilibri um line is
x
Y= - - (8)
A+Bx
and the operating line is
y = mx+ b (9)
Taking the top product composition as d, the us e of
a total conde nser gives YI = d. The plat e numbers are
counted from top to bottom. The liquid leaving plate
1 is obtained from Eq. (8). Thus
AYI
Xl = (10)
- BYl + l
and Y2' obtained from t he substitution of XI from Eq.
John J. Chen is an Associate Professor in chemical
and materials engineering at the University of Auck-
....... ... ; : ; ; ; ~ ........... land. New Zealand.
Chemi cal Engineering Edu cation
Simp lifying
I'I (Yn- Y
p
+n)+[Yp+ n(1- BYn)- (mA- Bb)Yn - b]
r2(Y
n
- Y
p
+n)+[Yp+ n(1- BYn}- (rnA- Bb)Yn - b]
(21)
and assumi ng constant vola t ility and molal over -
flow, t he only unknowns are a a nd B. Furthermore,
may be solved explicit ly in t erms of a by using Eq .
(18). Thus
[- BYnYp+n +Y
p+ n
- (rnA- Bb)Y
n
- b]a
P= (19)
Yn -Y
p
+
n
It is now possi ble to eli minat e a and in Eq s. (6) and
(7), and to evaluate p, the number of pl at es. The
factors 1'1 and 1'2 ar e t he roots of t he characteris tic
equation of t he square mat ri x given in Eq. (16), and
they may be readily shown t o be
1'],1'2 - 4mA] (20)
Dividing Eq. (6) and Eq. (7), substitut ing t he value
for fr om Eq . (19), and eliminat ing a
(13)
(12a)
(12b)
*
YI+
n
alY
n
+a2
YI+n
YI +
n
b
l
y
n
+b
2
where
(10) into t he operating line equation [Eq. (9)], is
Y2 = mXI +b (lla)
(rnA - Bb)YI + b (ll b)
Y2 = - By] +1
Now we can define y , t he composition of t he
vapour leavin g the as
The plate number from which we begin t he ste p-
ping-off process is n. The value of yp+n when p = 1
(i .e., Yl+)' is t hus given by
(18)
APPLICATION
(22)
Th e roots for the characteri stic equat ions for above
and below the feed are , r espectively
(23)
(24)
(25)
(26) 1'2 = 0.40920
I'
f n --!-
1'2
x
y =0.75x+ 0.249
Y=1.3773x+0.001886
1'] = 0.75130
Thus, t he number of pl at es p betwen t ray number
(p-i n) and n is given by
I'I (Yn- Y
p
+n)+ [Yp+
n
(1- By
n
)- (mA- Bb)Yn - b]

1'2(Y
n
- Yp+n)+ [Yp+ n(I - BYn)- (rnA- Bb)Yn - b]
p = - ----''--------'---'-----"--'------- - - ------'-
We shall now apply Eq. ( 22) to the same problem
considered by Amundson in solving the di stillation
of a 0.40 mole fr actio n benzen e mixed with toluen e
introduced at its bubble point. Th e equilibr ium curve
is give n by
Y=----
0.41+0.59x
The t op produce is 0.995 benzen e, and the bottom is
0. 005 benzen e. The operating lines above and below
t he feed are, respectively
and
[
Yp+n*]=[(rnA - Bb) b
1
]P[YIn] (16)
Y
p
+
n
<' - B
[
YP+n". ] = [ a (mA- Bb) ab] [Yn] +[P O] [ Yn] (17)
Y
p
+n' " -ab a 1 P 1
al = mA- Bb (14a)
a2 = b
(14b)
b
l
=- B (14c)
b
2
=1 (14d)
Thus
[ Y
1
1 ]
(15)
With referenc e t o Eq. (12b), it may be shown by
induction that
By comparing Eqs. (ll b) and (13), where p = 1 and
n = 1,
Applying Eq. (5), Eq . (16) may be r e-written as
The composit ion of vapour leaving the (p-m)" plate
may t hen be written in t erms of t he vapour leaving
the nthplate as
=[ Y
p
+n* l [a (mA-Bb)+p]Yn+ab
Yp+n
Yp+
n
"* -aBY
n
+a+ p
In Eq. (18), given a binary di stillation problem
Winter 1990 51
results in 9.54 plates above feed position.
Below t he feed position, Eq. (22) may be a pplied
by taking n =9.54, i.e., Y9fi4 =0.549. We obtain y ~ I f i 4
by subs t it ut ing values for A, B, m, and b from Eqs.
(23) and (25), and using 1'1 =0.99744 and 1'2 =0.56615.
We obtai n y +9.54 by substit uti ng x = 0.005 in to t he
equi librium fine to give yp+9fi 4=0.01 21. Thus
Applying Eq . (22) t o above the feed posi ti on,
n =1, y\ =0.995, inserting t he a ppropriate values for
A, B, m, and b from Eqs. (23) and (24) with referen ce
to Eqs. (10 ) and (11), and usi ng r
l
= 0.75130 and
1'2 =0.40920, we obtain Y
n
+\ by substitut ing t he feed
composition into the operating line as the feed is in-
troduced at it s bubble point. Thus Yn+l = 0.549 (or
0.553 using the lower operating lin e). ... '
..7 ,
1'1 = 0.99744
Appl ying the va lues
1'1 ~ 0.75130
YI = 0.995
B = 0.59
A = 0.4 1
1'1 = 0.99744
Y9, 54 = 0.549
B = 0.59
A = 0.41
1'2 =0.40920
Yp+l = 0.549
ill = 0.75
b = 0. 249
1'2 = 0.56615
Yp+9 .54 = 0.01 21
ill = 1.3773
b = 0.001886
(27)
Conti nued from page 49.
stude nts. In sigh t into the rel ati ve importance of
va ria bles and sensitivity of r esult s to changes in t he
input can be gat her ed from such an exercise. The
ease of changi ng input data al so allows instructors
to efficient ly check calcula tio ns made wit h different
combinations of independen t va ria bles.
CONCLUSIONS
Our experience wit h spreadsheet computing has
proved to us t hat it is feasibl e to provide ins t ruction
on spreadsheet use as part of t he mass and ene rgy
bal ances class. Within a t ime-frame of approximate ly
t wo hours, st ude nts ca n learn sufficient funda me n-
t al s to use spreads heets as a tool for solving a va ri-
ety of probl ems in t he class. After solvi ng five to
eight problems , most of t hem have enough confi-
dence a nd exper ience to apply t he tec hniques in
future engi neer ing classes.
Th e use of spre ads heets also encourages organi-
zation in pr obl em solving which hopefull y will carry
t hrough to t he st udent's non-computer work. The
flexibil ity and conveni ence of spre adsheet s allows
students to solve more meaningful probl ems and to
examine t he solutions in detail by mani pula t ing in-
dependent va r iables t o determine t he ir effect . The
built-in gr a phics capability also helps to ti e together
gr aphical and al gebraic solution t echniques wh en
such alternate methods exist for a given probl em.
These values, when substituted int o Eq. (22) yield
9.91 plates below feed positi on.
CONCLUSIONS
Th e binary di stillation probl em considered by
Amundson wa s r e-examined, and a simpler method
involving powers of matrices has been give n a nd an
explicit solution obtained . This approach is suitable
for us e in engineer ing mathematics or separation
processes courses to illustrate the application of
matrices to engi neering problems.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
Th e author is grateful to his colleague, Kevin
Free, for improvements in the clarity of this paper.
REFERENCES
1. Amundson, N. , "Applicat ion of Matrices a nd Finite Differ-
ence Equations to Binary Dist ill ati on," Trans. AIChE, 42,
939(1946) 0
52
REFERENCES
1. Rosen , E.M., a nd R.N. Adams, "A Review of Spreads heet
Usage in Che mical En gin eering Ca lculat ions ," Computers
and Ch ern, Engg., 1U 6), 723 (1987 )
2. Gr ulke, E.A. , "Us ing Spreads heets for Teach ing Desi gn,"
Chern. Eng. Ed., 20 , 128 (1986)
3. Dijkstra, E.W., A Di scipline of" Programming, Prent ice-
Hall Inc., En glewood CIiITs, N.J (1976 )
4. Rosen , E.M., "The Use of Lot us 1-2-3 Macros in Engineer-
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5. Asp enplus, Asp en Technology Cor porat ion, Ca mbr idge,
MA
6. Himme lhlau, D.M., Basic Principles and Calculations in
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curn, NJ (1982)
7. Felder, R.M. , and R.W. Rousseau, El ementary Prin ciples
of" Chemical Processes, .Joh n Wiley & So ns, New Yor k
(1986 )
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9. Lotus 1-2-3, Lot us Devel opment Corporation, Ca mbridge ,
MA
10. Supercalc, Compute r Associa t es Int ernati onal , San -Iose,
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11. Smartware, Infor mix Soft ware Inc. , Len exa , KS
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Matter: Th e Engineer's Essenti al One-Page Memo," Chem.
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Chemical Engineering Educati on