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CHE 4151


EXAMPLE - Mass Transfer Limitation

Problem 11-5, p.731 in Fogler.

A plant is removing a trace of Cl2 from a waste gas stream by passing it over a
solid granular adsorbent in a tubular packed bed (Figure P11-5). At present, 63.2%
removal is being accomplished, but it is believed that greater removal could be achieved
if the flow rate were increased by a factor of 4, the particle diameter were decreased by
a factor of 3, and the packed tube length increased by 50%. What percentage of
chlorine would be removed under the scheme proposed ? (The chlorine transferring to
the absorbent is removed completely by a virtually instantaneous chemical reaction.)
[Ans.: 98%.] What guidelines (T, Q, C T ) would you propose for efficient or optimum
operation of this bed ?

Hint : use equation (11-73), p.715.

kC α (DAB2 / 3 / ν1 / 6) (Q / dP)1 / 2


If the surface reaction is “instantaneous”, the rate of chlorine removal is likely to
be mass transfer limited. A material balance for a PFR yields

= −Na
d V

where F = molar flow rate of chlorine, N = molar flux to absorbent surface, and a =
surface area per unit bed volume. Let F = Q C and N = k F C. Assuming that Q is

9997 Assuming that the dependence of kF upon particle diameter and flow rate is given by equation (11-73). K* = 1. and specific surface area is inversely proportional to particle diameter. k F* = 3.980 Note : if kF is assumed to be constant. K = kF a V / Q = 0. Q* = 4 Q . a* = 3 a . the balance may be integrated to yield Q ln (C / Ci) = Q ln (1 − x) = − kF a V For the current conditions (x = 0.632).464 kF K* = 3.125 and x* = 0. .675.896 x* = 0. V* = 1.relatively constant.5 V .