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CONTENTS PAGE

1.0 GENERAL 1.0-1

2.0 INLETS 2.0-1

2.1 Design of Liquid Distributors 2.0-1


2.2 Design of Mixed Phase Distributors 2.0-3
2.3 Reflux Inlets 2.0-4
2.4 Feed Inlets 2.0-13

Figure No. Figure Description

1 Reflux Inlet to One-Pass Tray, 2.0-5


"Elbow Arrangement"

2 Reflux Inlet to One-Pass Tray, 2.0-6


"Tee Arrangement"

3 Reflux Inlet to One-Pass Tray, 2.0-7


"False Downcomer Arrangement"

4 Reflux Inlet to One-Pass Tray, 2.0-8


"Hole Type Arrangement"

5 Reflux Inlet to Two-Pass Tray With 2.0-9


Center Downcomer

6 Reflux Inlet to Two-Pass Tray With 2.0-10


Side Downcomers

7 Reflux Inlet to Four-Pass Tray With 2.0-11


Center Downcomer

8 Reflux Inlet to Four-Pass Tray With 2.0-12


Off-Center Downcomers

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2.0 INLETS (Continued)

Figure No. Figure Description

9 Liquid or Mixed Phase Feed Inlet 2.0-14


for One-Pass Tray

10 Liquid or Mixed Phase Feed Inlet 2.0-15


for Two-Pass Tray with Center
Downcomer

11 Liquid or Mixed Phase Feed Inlet 2.0-16


for Two-Pass Tray with Side
Downcomers

12 Liquid or Mixed Phase Feed Inlet 2.0-17


for Four-Pass Tray with Center
Downcomer

13 Liquid or Mixed Phase Feed Inlet 2.0-18


for Four-Pass Tray with Off-
Center Downcomers

14 Intertray Vapor Inlets 2.0-19

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3.0 OUTLETS 3.0-1

3.1 Liquid Drawoffs 3.0-1


3.2 Vapour Outlets 3.0-15

Table No. Table Description

1 Capacities of Side-Pan Drawoff 3.0-3


Nozzles

2 Capacities of Bottom-Pan Drawoff 3.0-4


Nozzles

3 Typical Swaged Lines After Side- 3.0-5


Pan Drawoff Nozzle

Figure No. Figure Description

15 Types of Drawoff Pans 3.0-6

16 Partial Drawoff One-Pass Tray 3.0-7

17 Total Drawoff One-Pass Tray 3.0-8

18 Partial Drawoff Two-Pass Tray 3.0-9

19 Total Drawoff Two-Pass Tray 3.0-10

20 Partial Drawoff Four-Pass Tray 3.0-11

21 Total Drawoff Four-Pass Tray 3.0-12

22 Bottoms Liquid Drawoffs 3.0-13

23 Water Drawoff Pan for Light Oils 3.0-14


Column

24 Overhead Vapor Outlets 3.0-16

4.0 TRANSITIONS 4.0-1

Figure No. Figure Description


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25 Transition from One-Pass Tray to 4.0-2


Two-Pass Tray (Three Dimensional
View)

26 Transition from One-Pass Tray to 4.0-3


Two-Pass Tray for Liquid or Mixed
Phase Feed

27 Transition from One-Pass Tray to 4.0-4


Four-Pass Tray for All Liquid Feed

28 Transition from Two-Pass Tray to 4.0-5


Four-Pass Tray for All Liquid Feed

5.0 TOWER BOTTOM DETAILS 5.0-1

5.1 Once-Through Thermosyphon Reboiler 5.0-1


5.2 Recirculation-Type Reboiler 5.0-1
5.3 Kettle Reboiler 5.0-2
5.4 Liquid Residence Time 5.0-2
5.5 Sketches of Various Arrangements 5.0-3

Figure No. Figure Description

29 Tower Bottom Once-Through 5.0-4


Thermosyphon Reboiler, One-Pass
Tray

30 Tower Bottom Once-Through 5.0-5


Thermosyphon Reboiler, Two-Pass
Tray With Center Downcomer

31 Tower Bottom Once-Through 5.0-6


Thermosyphon Reboiler, Two-Pass
Tray With Side Downcomers

32 Tower Bottom Once-Through 5.0-7


Thermosyphon Reboiler, Four-Pass
Tray
5.0 TOWER BOTTOM DETAILS (Continued)

33 Tower Bottom Recirculation -Type 5.0-8


Reboiler, One-Pass Tray,
Combined Bottoms Product and
Reboiler Feed
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34 Tower Bottom Recirculation -Type 5.0-9


Reboiler, Two-Pass Tray With
Center Downcomer, Combined
Bottoms Product and Reboiler
Feed

35 Tower Bottom Recirculation -Type 5.0-10


Reboiler, Two-Pass Tray With Side
Downcomers, Combined Bottoms
Product and Reboiler Feed

36 Tower Bottom Recirculation -Type 5.0-11


Reboiler, Four-Pass Tray,
Combined Bottoms Product and
Reboiler Feed

37 Tower Bottoms Recirculation -Type 5.0-12


Reboiler, Separate Outlets for
Bottoms Product and Reboiler Feed

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1.0 GENERAL
The technical literature contains numerous references to distillation towers which
though sized adequately have maloperated or flooded because the design of
tower inlets, outlets, or internals was neglected or overlooked. This Process
Standard presents information and sketches to assist engineers in developing
satisfactory tower designs. It is suggested that, whenever possible, appropriately
marked-up Xerox copies of the sketches given in this Process Standard be used
as attachments to the vessel sketches which are normally issued by the Process
Design Department to Project. The information contained in this Standard is
concerned strictly with internals for tray-type towers. Information on internals for
packed towers is available in design manuals produced by vendors such as
Glitsch.

The following are general design criteria:

a. Inlets to towers should be designed to obtain uniform fluid distribution


within the tower without interfering with the normal flow patterns of
tower traffic. Means for accomplishing this differ depending on tower
location points, phase composition, and the number of passes per tray.

b. Outlets from towers should be designed so that tower hydraulics remain


satisfied (downcomer sealing, etc.) and vortexing in or adjacent to the
outlet is avoided. Where outlets can be plugged, e.g. by a broken float
from a level controller or by coke obstructions, screening means should
be provided.

c. Reboiler connections and tower bottom internals are described in detail


and will vary according to the intentions of the designer. When
operating conditions tend to promote degradation of bottom product,
minimum hold-up requirements will affect the designer’s choice of
equipment size and detail. Sometimes the advantage of an additional
theoretical tray is desirable and can be obtained by providing suitable
baffling which will segregate bottoms product from the reboiler feed.
When information indicates the tendency of the reboiled fluid to foam or
froth, additional free space should be provided below the bottom tray.

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2.0 INLETS
Presented in this section are equations and detailed sketches to be used in the
design of reflux and feed inlets. The sketches show various arrangements,
which are suitable for one, two, and four pass trays. Wherever possible,
explanatory notes are given directly on the sketch rather than in a separate text.

2.1 Design of Liquid Distributors


Liquid is often distributed to a tower through one or more pipes containing
a series of equally spaced holes or slots. The number and size of these
holes or slots are determined as follows:

The standard orifice equation for liquids is:

Q = 29.8 Cd2 (!P/SG)1/2

Where

Q = Flow, gpm (hot)

C = Orifice Coefficient

!P = Pressure drop, psi

SG = Sp. Gr. at conditions

d = Orifice Diam., inches

If A = the total area of all the holes or slots in the distributor, inch2, then
the equation above becomes:
Q
A= (SG/ !P)1/2
38.0C

Since in almost all cases C = 0.6 and !P = 0.25, we then get:


1/2
Q(SG)
A=
11.4
If a = the area of each hole or slot, inch2, then the number of holes or slots
A Q(SG )1/2
=N= =
a 11.4a

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2.0 INLETS (Cont’d)

2.1 Design of Liquid Distributors (cont’d)


Each hole or slot should be large enough so that it won’t plug. The
minimum recommended hole diameter is ½”. Care must also be taken to
make sure that N is not so large that it is physically impossible to provide
the calculated number of holes or slots on the given length of pipe. As the
limiting case, the length of cut metal should not exceed the length of uncut
metal on the pipe.

The total hole area calculated should be some reasonable multiple of the
cross sectional area of the inlet nozzle. A reasonable multiple lies
somewhere between 1.0 and 3.0. If the total hole area calculated does
not appear “reasonable” it may be adjusted by changing the value of !P to
some value other than 0.25 psi.

Example

The flow of reflux through a 6 inch, schedule 40, line to the top tray of a
10'-0" I.D. debutanizer is 640 gpm (hot). The specific gravity of the reflux,
at flow conditions is 0.523. Design a hole-type distributor having an
allowable pressure drop of 0.25 psi.

Q(SG)1 / 2
Using A " we have,
11.4

(640)(0.523)1/2
Ratio = A " " 40.6inch which is "reasonable".
11.4

Pipe X Section for 6 inch, schedule 40, line = 28.9 inch2

The maximum total available length for cutting holes in a distributor


located in the center of a 10'-0" tower is approximately (10.0)(12)(0.5) = 60
inches.

Trial 1

If we try • •inch holes,


a = (#$%$&' (1/2)2 = 0.19625 inch2

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2.0 INLETS (Cont’d)

2.1 Design of Liquid Distributors (cont’d)

40.6
Ratio = " 1.41
28.9

Cut length = (• )•(207) = 103.5 inch (NO GOOD!)

Trial 2

If we try 1 inch holes,

(
a " (1)2 " 0.785inch 2
4

40.6
N= " 52 holes
0.785

Cut length = (1)(52) = 52 inch vs. 60 inch max. (O.K.)

   USE 52, 1 inch diameter holes

2.2 Design of Mixed Phase Distributors


For mixed phase (vapor + liquid) distributors, the following equations
apply:

1.5V
A = () / !P)1 / 2
C

V = Volumetric flow of liquid plus vapor, ft3/sec

C = Orifice Coefficient

!P = Pressure drop, psi

) = Bulk density of liquid plus vapor, lbs/ft3

A = Total area of all the holes in distributor, inch2

If C = 0.6 and !P = 0.25 we have:

A = 5V())1/2

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2.0 INLETS (Cont’d)

2.2 Design of Mixed Phase Distributors (cont’d)

If a = Area of each hole or slot, inch2, then:


A 5V())1 / 2
N = No. of holes = "
a a
For other rules concerning distributors, see Section 2.1 above.

2.3 Reflux Inlets


Figures 1 through 8 given below show various reflux inlet arrangements.
In most cases, the downcomer widths, downcomer clearances, and
location of the inlet weirs are determined by the tray vendor. The
dimensions and notes given on these figures are all self-explanatory.

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FIGURE 2

REFLUX INLET TO ONE-PASS TRAY


"TEE ARRANGEMENT"

NOTES: 1. "Tee" provides for somewhat better distribution than elbow


arrangement and also protects tray deck from possible damage,
which can result from high liquid velocity through elbow.

2. By tray vendor. Usually the same as downcomer width.

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FIGURE 3

REFLUX INLET TO ONE-PASS TRAY


"FALSE DOWNCOMER ARRANGEMENT"

BAFFLE

3xD

REFLUX
INLET

DOWNCOMER FALSE
DOWNCOMER

BAFFLE

~ ~
TRAY
SPACING REFLUX
INLET

{ LOCATE MINIMUM
DISTANCE BELOW BAFFLE }
FALSE
DOWNCOMER SEE NOTE 2

NOTES: 1. More expensive than either the "elbow" or the "tee" arrangement,
but provides for more uniform distribution than either of those two
methods.

2. Clearance beneath false downcomer is the same as that provided


for downcomers on other trays. The specific clearance dimension
is established by the tray vendor.

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FIGURE 4

REFLUX INLET TO ONE-PASS TRAY


"HOLE-TYPE ARRANGEMENT"

NOTES: 1. This arrangement provides for the most uniform method of


distribution.

2. See Section 2.1 for rules needed to calculate the number and size
of holes or slots.

3. By tray vendor. Usually the same as downcomer width.

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FIGURE 5

REFLUX INLET TO TWO-PASS TRAY


WITH CENTER DOWNCOMER

REFLUX
INLET

BLANK END OF PIPE

D EQUALLY SPACED HOLES OR


POINTING DOWNWARD ON EACH
BRANCH

BLANK END OF PIPE

CENTER
INLET WEIR DOWNCOMER

~ ~
REFLUX
INLET
1/2D + 3"

~ ~

NOTES: 1. See Section 2.1 for rules needed to calculate the number and size
of holes or slots.

2. When pressure drop and velocity permit, the individual branches


may be made one line size smaller than the reflux inlet line.

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FIGURE 6

REFLUX INLET TO TWO-PASS TRAY


WITH SIDE DOWNCOMERS

BLANK END OF PIPE

EQUALLY SPACED HOLES


OR SLOTS POINTING DOWNWARD

REFLUX
INLET

SIDE DOWNCOMER

BLANK END OF PIPE


INLET WEIR

~ ~
D

1/2D + 3"
REFLUX
INLET

~ ~
NOTES: 1. See Section 2.1 for rules needed to calculate the number and size
of holes or slots.

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FIGURE 7

REFLUX INLET TO FOUR-PASS TRAY WITH CENTRE DOWNCOMER

REFLUX
INLET BLANK END OF PIPE

EQUALLY SPACED
HOLES OR SLOTS
POINTING
DOWNWARD ON
EACH BRANCH

SIDE
DOWNCOMER

INLET WEIR CENTER


DOWNCOMER

REFLUX
INLET
1/2D+3”

NOTES: 1. See Section 2.1 for rules needed to calculate the number and size
of holes or slots.

2. When pressure drop and velocity permit, the individual branches


may be made one line size smaller than the reflux inlet line.

3. The two individual branches may be split outside the tower if so


desired.

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FIGURE 8

REFLUX INLET TO FOUR-PASS TRAY


WITH OFF-CENTER DOWNCOMERS

NOTES: 1. See Section 2.1 for rules needed to calculate the number and size
of holes or slots.

2. When pressure drop and velocity permit, the individual branches


may be made one or possibly two line sizes smaller than the reflux
inlet.

3. The four individual branches may be split outside the tower if so


desired.

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2.0. INLET (Cont’d)

2.4 Feed Inlets


Figures 9 through 14 given below show various feed inlet arrangements.
For these figures, it should be noted that the dimension labeled as
"minimum", between the feed inlet centerline and the downcomer from the
tray above, should not be interpreted as meaning that the nozzle touch the
downcomer. Preferably a minimum clearance, say 1 inch, should be
provided. For all liquid inlets, Figures 27 and 28 provide for alternatively
suitable feed inlet arrangements.

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FIGURE 9

LIQUID OR MIXED PHASE


FEED INLET FOR ONE-PASS TRAY

45°

NOTES: 1. See Sections 2.1 and 2.2 for rules needed to calculate the number
and size of holes or slots.

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FIGURE 10

LIQUID OR MIXED PHASE


FEED INLET FOR TWO-PASS TRAY
WITH CENTER DOWNCOMER

45°

NOTES: 1. See Sections 2.1 and 2.2 for rules needed to calculate the number
and size of holes or slots.

2. When pressure drop and velocity permit, the individual branches


may be made one line size smaller than the feed inlet line.

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FIGURE 11

LIQUID OR MIXED PHASE


FEED INLET FOR TWO-PASS TRAY
WITH SIDE DOWNCOMERS

45°

NOTES: 1. See Sections 2.1 and 2.2 for rules needed to calculate the number
and size of holes or slots.

2. The two feed inlets are obtained by symmetrically splitting the main
feed line outside the tower.

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FIGURE 12

LIQUID OR MIXED PHASE


FEED INLET FOR FOUR-PASS TRAY
WITH CENTER DOWNCOMER

45°

NOTES: 1. See Sections 2.1 and 2.2 for rules needed to calculate the number
and size of holes or slots.

2. The four feed inlets are obtained by symmetrically splitting the main
feed line outside the tower.

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FIGURE 13

LIQUID OR MIXED PHASE


FEED INLET FOR FOUR-PASS TRAY
WITH OFF-CENTER DOWNCOMERS

45°

NOTES: 1. See Sections 2.1 and 2.2 for rules needed to calculate the number
and size of holes or slots.

2. The four feed inlets are obtained by symmetrically splitting the main
feed line outside the tower.

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3.0 OUTLETS
Presented in this section are information and detailed sketches to be used in
the design of liquid drawoffs and vapor outlets.

3.1 Liquid Drawoffs


Figure 15 shows two types of drawoff pans. The dimensioning and the
sizing of lines from drawoff pans presents a number of distinct problems,
some of which may be overlooked by engineers. The line size from a
drawoff pan is critical for the following reasons:

1. Liquid from a tower tray is aerated to some extent depending on the


foaminess of the gas-liquid mixture. The degree of aeration is
seldom known nor can it be calculated. Although the gas-free liquid
rate is known, it can be appreciated that a very small quantity of
gas in the liquid will increase the volumetric liquid rate substantially.

2. The depth of the drawoff pan is limited due to interference with the
tray below, thus limiting the head of liquid above the drawoff nozzle.
These low heads are conducive to vortex formation, which
seriously lowers the discharge rate through the nozzle.

The recommended method for sizing drawoffs employs the following


criteria:

1. The depth of the drawoff pan to be 1½ times the nozzle diameter


(IPS). The minimum allowable depth is 8".

2. The allowable velocity may vary from 2.4 ft/sec to 4.0 ft/sec
depending upon the nozzle size. See Tables 1 and 2.

3. The nozzle is to be swaged down to a line size, which will not


exceed 0.5 psi/100 ft pressure drop. The swage is to occur at a
point in elevation 4 ft below the nozzle drawoff. Only lines 8" IPS
and larger are to be swaged down, the small lines will be
maintained at nozzle size to the pump or first exchanger. See
Table 3.

The calculation of velocities is based upon an arbitrarily modified


discharge coefficient, which compensates for the flow from an essentially
stationary liquid in the drawoff pan to the nozzle allowing for both a slight
aeration and some vortexing. The coefficients for full vortexing may be as
low as 0.20 for heads below 8".

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3.0 OUTLETS (Cont’d)

3.1 Liquid Drawoffs (cont’d)


Discharge coefficient is defined as:

V
c" V = Velocity for total nozzle area; ft/sec
2gh
H = ft of head above nozzle centerline
If vortexing does not occur, the coefficient of discharge for low heads is:
V
C" R = Radius of nozzle in ft
R2
2gh (1 * )
32H 2
The experimental value of C for a submerged sharp edged orifice with
extended tube (nozzle) for water varies from 0.60 to 0.80. To account for
aeration and some vortexing, we are arbitrarily dropping the value of the
discharge coefficient to 0.35. Tables 1 and 2 show values of allowable
velocities and maximum capacities for various size drawoff lines. Figure
15 illustrates the elevations involved.

Figures 16 through 23 show various drawoff applications and give the


details of their arrangement.

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TABLE 1

CAPACITIES OF SIDE-PAN DRAWOFF NOZZLES

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Nominal Min. Depth of h Flow


Line Size, Depth* Pan 3)-d/2 V Calc., V Allowed,
Inches of Pan, Plus 3" Inches H Ft/Sec Ft/Sec BPSD GPM
Inches

3 8 11 9.5 0.891 2.50 2.4 1,890 55

4 8 11 9.0 0.867 2.43 2.4 3,260 95

6 9 12 9.0 0.867 2.43 2.4 7,610 222

8 12 15 11.0 0.937 2.68 2.5 13,300 388

10 15 18 13.0 1.04 2.91 2.75 23,100 675

12 18 21 15.0 1.12 3.14 3.0 35,800 1,045

14 21* 24 17.0 1.19 3.33 3.2 46,100 1,350

16 24* 27 19.0 1.26 3.53 3.4 64,300 1,880

18 27* 30 21.0 1.32 3.71 3.6 85,600 2,500

20 30* 33 23.0 1.38 3.87 3.75 111,000 3,240

24 36* 39 27.0 1.50 4.21 4.0 155,000 4,520

*To decrease depth of pan, consideration should be given to multiple drawoff nozzles.

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TABLE 2

CAPACITIES OF BOTTOM-PAN DRAWOFF NOZZLES

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Nominal Min. Depth* Depth of Flow


Line Size, of Pan, Pan V Calc., V Allowed,
Inches Inches Plus 3" (h) H Ft/Sec Ft/Sec BPSD GPM

3 8 11 0.957 2.68 2.4 1,890 55

4 8 11 0.957 2.68 2.4 3,260 95

6 9 12 1.0 2.81 2.5 7,920 231

8 12 15 1.12 3.14 2.75 14,700 428

10 15 18 1.22 3.43 3.0 26,000 756

12 18* 21 1.32 3.71 3.25 38,700 1,125

14 21* 24 1.41 3.96 3.6 52,000 1,515

16 24* 27 1.50 4.21 3.8 71,800 2,090

18 27* 30 1.58 4.44 4.05 97,000 2,820

20 30* 33 1.65 4.63 4.25 126,500 3,680

24 36* 39 1.80 5.06 4.5 192,000 5,600

*To decrease depth of pan, consideration should be given to multiple drawoff nozzles.

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TABLE 3

TYPICAL SWAGED LINES AFTER SIDE-PAN DRAWOFF NOZZLE

Assumptions:

1. Capacities of Lines in Table 1.


2. Allowable Pressure Drop = 0.5 psi/100 ft.
3. Assume Hot Sp. Gr. = 0.8 and Viscosity = 3 Centistokes.

1 2 3 4 5

Assumed
Drawoff Flow, Swaged PSI/100 Ft Velocity in
Nozzle BPSD Line Size of Swaged Line Swaged Line

3 1,890 3 0.32 2.4

4 3,260 4 0.24 2.4

6 7,610 6 0.16 2.4

8 13,300 6 0.43 4.2

10 23,100 8 0.31 4.3

12 35,800 8 0.54 6.7

14 46,100 10 0.36 5.5

16 64,300 12 0.32 5.4

18 85,600 12 0.43 7.2

20 111,000 14 0.48 7.7

24 155,000 16 0.47 9.1

NOTES: Swaged line size may be slightly different depending upon physical
properties of fluid, static head, physical layout, and position of swage in
relation to drawoff nozzle.

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FIGURE 15

TYPES OF DRAWOFF PANS

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FIGURE 16

PARTIAL DRAWOFF ONE-PASS TRAY

TRAY N+1 DOWNCOMER

TRAY N TRAY N
DOWNCOMER DRAWOFF BOX

~ ~
TRAY N+1

TRAY
SPACING
TRAY N
d
h
AS
REQUIRED
TRAY N-1 18" (MIN)
d DRAWOFF
2 OUTLET

~ ~

NOTES: 1. See Table 1 for value of h.

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FIGURE 17

TOTAL DRAWOFF ONE-PASS TRAY

d2

NOTES: 1. See Table 1 for value of h.


2. See Figure 9 for details of Drawoff Return.

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FIGURE 18

PARTIAL DRAWOFF TWO-PASS TRAY

TRAY N
DOWNCOMER
TRAY N+1 TRAY N
DOWNCOMER DRAWOFF BOX
DRAWOFF
OUTLET

~ TRAY N+1 ~
TRAY
SPACING TRAY N d
h

AS
REQUIRED 18" (MIN) d
2

TRAY N-1

~ ~

NOTES: 1. See Table 1 for value of h.

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FIGURE 19

TOTAL DRAWOFF TWO-PASS TRAY

d2
Tray N+1

Tray N

d1

NOTES: 1. See Table 1 for value of h.


2. See Figure 11 for details of drawoff return.

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FIGURE 20

PARTIAL DRAWOFF FOUR-PASS TRAY

NOTES: 1. See Table 1 for value of h.

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FIGURE 21

TOTAL DRAWOFF FOUR-PASS TRAY

NOTES: 1. See Table 1 for value of h.


2. See Figure 12 for details of drawoff return.

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FIGURE 22

BOTTOM LIQUID DRAWOFFS

LOW LIQUID LEVEL


6"

VORTEX BOTTOM
BREAKER DRAWOFF

A. NORMAL DRAWOFF

D + 6"

D/3, min = 2" D

OOOO
OOO NOTES 1,2
OOOO

1" HOLE AREA TO BE


4 MIN. OF 400% OF
NOZZLE AREA

B. DRAWOFF WITH
COKE STRAINER

1) Provide cylindrical basket strainer with N- " holes equivalent to a minimum of


four times area of outlet nozzle.
2) Top of strainer is open.
3) Slope approximately 3"/ft.
4) Where a tar pot is provided to minimize hold-up, H = 12" minimum and a
maximum number of " holes are drilled even if hole area exceed four times
nozzle area.

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FIGURE 23

WATER DRAWOFF PAN


FOR LIGHT OILS COLUMN

NOTES: 1. Arrangement shown is for a one-pass tray, but the dimensions


given may also be used for two or four-pass trays.

2. Risers are sized for 30 ft/sec with the total number usually varying
between 2 and 12, symmetrically arranged.

3. The hold-up time on the pan is not critical for the design. If hold-up
time is taken into consideration, however, the calculation may
indicate a pan of very great depth. To avoid this problem, a
standard 36 inch depth is recommended.

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3.0 OUTLETS (Cont’d)

3.2 Vapor Outlets


Figure 24 shows the details of two arrangements for overhead vapor
outlets. As indicated on the sketch, the Type I arrangement is preferred
and the Type II arrangement is shown mainly for information purposes.

Intertray vapor outlets are rarely used and because of this, a sketch has
not been provided. When intertray vapor outlets are required, twice the
normal tray spacing should be used, with the vapor outlet located a half
tray spacing below the upper tray. For a single vapor outlet nozzle,
located among multi-pass trays, vapor tunnels through the downcomers
may be required to equalize the flow of vapor to the trays above the single
vapor outlet.

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FIGURE 24

OVERHEAD VAPOR OUTLETS

1½ TS
1½ TS

NOTES: 1. General preference is given for Type I since the nozzle cost is less.

2. Type II has the advantage of accessibility from top platform of vents


or instruments mounted on outlet pipe.

3. In general, Type II is used only when it is requested by the client.

4. TS = Normal Tray Spacing.

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4.0 TRANSITIONS

This section shows sketches of transitions from one- to two-pass trays, one- to
four-pass trays, and two- to four-pass trays. The transition method illustrated is
one, which requires that the downcomers for the trays above the transition be
rotated 90 degrees with respect to the downcomers for the trays below the
transition. This method is shown in three dimensional view in Figure 25.
Figures 26 through 28 give the details of the transition for each of three different
pass arrangements. Although the method of transition shown is the
recommended one, it should be noted that many other methods exist which can
be used as well. Information on these other methods may be obtained from tray
vendors.

The following are notes, which apply to Figures 26 through 28:

NOTES: 1. The transition need not necessarily occur in a swaged


section of the tower, but may instead occur in a section of
constant diameter.

2. Where a swaged section exists, the downcomer from Tray


N+1 may be extended into the swaged section, if so desired.

3. The seal pan may have a “V” notch instead of a rectangular


notch, if so desired. In either case, the notch must be
located so that it discharges directly into the inlet weirs of
Tray N.
4. For a rectangular notch design, some engineers prefer that a
trough, parallel to the inlet weirs on Tray N, emanate from
the notch and extend across the length of the tower. Liquid
then pours along the entire length of the trough into the inlet
weirs on Tray N.
5. The downcomers for all of the trays above the transition
must be rotated 90 degrees with respect to the downcomers
for all the trays below the transition.

6. The distributors shown on Figures 27 and 28 are suitable


only for an all-liquid feed. For a mixed-phase feed, the
distributor must be similar in design to that shown in Figure
26. See Section 2.0 for detailed information on distributors.

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5.0 TOWER BOTTOM DETAILS


This section contains information and sketches for various tower arrangements.
These correspond to the use of different types of reboilers and a variety of tray
pass counts. A discussion of the various types of reboilers precedes the
presentation of the detailed sketches.

5.1 Once-Through Thermosyphon Reboiler


The horizontal once-through thermosyphon reboiler is the type of reboiler
normally preferred. Its feed is trapout liquid from the bottoms tray and its
outlet consists of a two-phase mixture of bottoms product and reboiled
vapor. The effective separation achieved in the once-through
thermosyphon reboiler is equivalent to one theoretical tray in the tower.
This type of reboiler may be used provided the percent vaporization at the
reboiler outlet does not exceed 80 percent. Above 80 percent
vaporization a recirculation or kettle type reboiler is normally used. In
addition, if the bottoms temperature is so high that a fired heater, rather
than a heat exchanger, must be employed, a recirculation-type bottoms
arrangement is then used. Figures 29 through 32 show the tower bottom
details for a once-through thermosyphon reboiler.

5.2 Recirculation-Type Reboiler


In a recirculation-type reboiler, the reboiler feed is a mixture of trapout
liquid from the bottoms tray and Recirculation liquid from the reboiler
outlet. The reboiler feed may flow to the reboiler by the thermosyphon
effect or, if required, as in the case of a fired heater, it may be pumped.
Because of the presence of the Recirculation liquid, the percent
vaporization at the reboiler outlet may be kept low compared to that
obtained in a once-through reboiler. For most Recirculation-type reboilers,
the tower bottoms is arranged so that a single nozzle is used to withdraw
the combined bottoms product and reboiler feed. When this is done, the
advantage of having the reboiler count as one theoretical tray is lost.
Usually this loss is not important. In some very low efficiency separations,
however, the loss of one theoretical tray means that several more actual
trays must be installed in the tower. In such a case, a special baffle may
be installed in the bottom of the tower to allow the bottoms product and
reboiler feed to be separately withdrawn and to thus maintain the effect of
one theoretical tray for the reboiler. Figures 33 through 36 show the tower
bottom details for the combined withdrawal arrangement and Figure 37
shows the details for the baffle arrangement.

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5.0 TOWER BOTTOM DETAILS (Cont’d)

5.3 Kettle Reboiler


A kettle reboiler is usually used for a narrow boiling range material with a
high percent vaporization. When a kettle is used, liquid residence time is
provided in the kettle rather than in the tower bottoms section. The
bottoms product is withdrawn directly from the kettle and the reboiler
return line to the tower contains only vapor. The tower bottoms details for
a kettle reboiler are the same as those given in Figures 33 through 37 for
the recirculation-type reboiler, the only difference being that the liquid
residence time in the case of the kettle is zero.

5.4 Liquid Residence Time


The liquid residence time (from LLL to HLL) to be used in designing the
bottom section of a tower is as follows:

1. Bottoms as feed to a subsequent tower on level control


is 5 minutes. In general, level control will frequently
prove satisfactory to the second of a series of towers.

2. Bottoms as feed to a subsequent tower on flow control


is 10 to 20 minutes. This amount of residence time may
be obtained, in the case of smaller towers, by swaging
out the hold-up section. Alternatively, a separate surge
drum may be required.

3. Bottoms to a heat exchanger and/or tankage is 2


minutes. This may be lower in the case of a vacuum
tower to prevent coking.

4. Feed to a fired coil reboiler is the sum of 5 minutes on


the vaporized portion and 2 minutes on the bottoms
product. It is normally desirable that the 5 minutes on
the vaporized portion be employed to establish the
NLL, with the subsequent 2 minutes on bottoms
product used to establish the HLL. The minimum
distance from NLL to HLL is 1 foot.

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5.0 TOWER BOTTOM DETAILS (Cont’d)

5.5 Sketches of Various Arrangements


The sketches of the various arrangements discussed in this section are
given below in Figures 29 through 37. The following explanatory notes
apply to Figure 37:

NOTES: 1. The sketch shown is for a single-pass tray.


For multiple passes, the baffle is positioned
analogously.

2. The baffle does not have to extend to the


bottom shell because the flow is from the
bottom product section to the reboiler feed
section. Thus, there should be no danger of
trapout liquid appearing in the bottoms
product.

3. The baffle is located so that the HLL satisfies


the liquid residence requirements both on the
bottoms product side and on the reboiler
feed side.

4. The clearance under the baffle should be a


minimum of 12" in order to provide enough
flow area for the recirculated fluid to flow
toward the reboiler feed nozzle.

Many of the sketches given below show two reboiler return


nozzles. Please note that depending upon the size of the unit
and the location of the reboiler, consideration may be given to
either one or two reboiler return nozzles.

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FIGURE 29

TOWER BOTTOM
ONCE-THROUGH THERMOSYPHON REBOILER
ONCE-PASS TRAY WITH CENTER DOWNCOMER

(See Note 1.)

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FIGURE 30

TOWER BOTTOM
ONCE-THROUGH THERMOSYPHON REBOILER
TWO-PASS TRAY WITH CENTER DOWNCOMER

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FIGURE 31

TOWER BOTTOM
ONCE-THROUGH THERMOSYPHON REBOILER
TWO-PASS TRAY WITH SIDE DOWNCOMERS

NOTES: 1. The top edge of the seal pan shall be above the top of the trapout
nozzle. The seal pan height, X, shall be added to the tray spacing,
to determine the height from the seal pan floor to the bottom tray.
Since the exact dimension of the clearance under the downcomer
is not known early in the job, one method of establishing X is:

X = O.D. of nozzle A + 6"

2. As an alternative, an arrangement similar to Figure 30 may be used


if nozzle A is large.

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FIGURE 32

TOWER BOTTOM
ONCE-THROUGH THERMOSYPHON
REBOILER FOUR-PASS TRAY

½
1.5D

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FIGURE 33

TOWER BOTTOM
RECIRCULATION TYPE REBOILER
ONE-PASS TRAY COMBINED
BOTTOMS PRODUCT AND REBOILER FEED

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FIGURE 34

TOWER BOTTOM
RECIRCULATION-TYPE REBOILER
TWO-PASS TRAY WITH CENTER DOWNCOMER
COMBINED BOTTOMS PRODUCT AND REBOILER FEED

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FIGURE 35
TOWER BOTTOM
RECIRCULATION-TYPE REBOILER
TWO-PASS TRAY WITH SIDE DOWNCOMERS
COMBINED BOTTOMS PRODUCT AND REBOILER FEED

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FIGURE 36
TOWER BOTTOM
RECIRCULATION-TYPE REBOILER
FOUR-PASS TRAY
COMBINED BOTTOMS PRODUCT AND REBOILER FEED

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FIGURE 37
TOWER BOTTOM
RECIRCULATION-TYPE REBOILER
SEPARATE OUTLETS FOR BOTTOMS
PRODUCT AND REBOILER FEED

See Notes on Page 5.0-3

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