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Sample Problem #3:

The exit gas from an alcohol fermenter consists of an air-CO2 mixture containing 10 mol% CO2
that is to be absorbed in a 5.0 N solution of triethanolamine, which contains 0.04 mol of carbon
dioxide per mole of amine. If the column operates isothermally at 25°C, if the exit liquid
contains 80% of the CO2 in the feed gas to the absorber, and if the absorption is carried out in
a six-theoretical-plate column, calculate: (a) Moles of amine solution required per mole of feed
gas (b) Exit gas composition

Equilibrium Data
Y 0.003 0.008 0.015 0.023 0.032 0.043 0.055 0.068 0.083 0.099 0.12
X 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.04 0.05 0.06 0.07 0.08 0.09 0.10 0.11
Y = moles CO2/mole air; X = moles CO2/mole amine solution

X0= 0.04 y1

Absorber
t = 25°C

N=6

78.4% CO2 absorbed

xN y7 = 0.1

Solution:

Basis: 1 mol entering gas

Top coordinates:

X 0 = 0.04 Y1 =
(1 − 0.784 )( 0.1) = 0.024
0 .9

Bottom coordinates:

0.1
XN = ? Y7 = = 0.1111
0. 9

0.024
Exit gas composition: y 1 = = 0.0234 (b)
1 + 0.024
0.12
0.1111
Y7
0.1

0.08

0.06

0.04

0.02
Top
(X0,Y1)
0 Equilibrium X6 = 0.0877
0 0.02 0.04 0.06 curve
0.08 0.1 0.12

0.1111− 0.024 L′
Operating line slope = = 1.83 =
0.0877 − 0.04 V′

mol a min e solution 1.83


∴ = ( 0.9 ) = 1.64 (a)
mol feed gas 1