102c

CONSIDERING THE NON-IDEALITY OF REBOILERS IN THE CALCULATION AND DESIGN OF DISTILLATION COLUMNS

Kari I. Keskinen*1,2, Timo Nyman1, Juha Björk3, Juhani Aittamaa2

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Neste Engineering Oy, P.O. Box 310, FIN-06101, Porvoo, Finland

Helsinki University of Technology, Laboratory for Chemical Engineering and Plant Design, P.O. Box 6100, FIN-02015 HUT, Espoo, Finland
3 *

Kemira Engineering Oy, P.O. Box 171, FIN-90101, Oulu, Finland

Corresponding author, Tel. +358 10 45 23725, Fax +358 10 45 27221 E-mail: Kari.Keskinen@fortum.com

Keywords: distillation, reboiler, thermosyphon, non-ideality

Prepared for presentation on the 2002 Annual Meeting, Indianapolis, IN, Nov. 3-8 Copyright ã Kari I. Keskinen, Neste Engineering Oy, Finland 11/2002 Unpublished AIChE shall not be responsible for statements or opinions contained in papers or printed in its publications.

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102c Abstract Reboilers and condensers of distillation columns are normally modeled in flowsheeting programs as ideal equilibrium stages. However, most reboiler systems in use today are not equivalent to an ideal stage even in theory. For example thermosyphon reboilers can correspond to more than one ideal stage or less than one ideal stage depending on the baffle configuration of the reboiler. These non-ideal reboiler separations affect the course of the separation in the whole column, and this effect is significant especially when there are only a few separation stages in the column. However, this non-ideality of the reboiler is much more significant for the thermal design of the reboiler.

The calculation method used for the simultaneous solution of the distillation column and reboiler is reviewed. The implementation of the method to a general-purpose sequential modular steady state flowsheeting program is also described. The program used in this study already contains methods for multicomponent plate efficiency by which the real behavior of all normal plates can be estimated. A similar type of efficiency factor is utilized also for the reboiler system. An important advantage of this approach is that it does not alter the solution scheme of the distillation model. The efficiency factors of the reboiler are updated together with the plate and/or packing efficiency updating.

Calculation routines for some of the most common reboiler arrangements as well as some reboiler systems containing two reboilers were implemented. Results of the test runs using various multicomponent mixtures are described and the importance of the non-ideality of these common reboiler structures is presented.

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This is also the case for example in revamp situations when the equipment exists and its performance in new operating point is studied by simulation. Thus an accurate calculation method for reboilers is required when the distillation column and reboiler is reviewed.102c Introduction Reboilers and condensers of distillation columns are normally modeled in flowsheeting programs as ideal equilibrium stages. 3 . the non-ideality and detailed construction of the reboiler is much more significant for the thermal design of the reboiler. but when the final equipment is designed more accurate values are required. For example thermosyphon reboilers can correspond to more than one ideal stage or less than one ideal stage depending on the baffle configuration of the column bottom sump. [5] and [6]. [4]. The implementation of the method to a generalpurpose sequential modular steady state flowsheeting program with capability to provide all transport properties in actual reboiler conditions is desirable. However. The program should also contain methods to estimate the real behavior of the plates and packings (multicomponent plate efficiencies or mass transfer rates) [3]. This effect is significant when there are only very few separation stages in the column. This assumption is acceptable in the preliminary design phase. These properties are difficult to estimate when the reboiler is modeled as an ideal equilibrium stage. Most reboiler systems in use today are not equivalent to an ideal stage. This non-ideal reboiler operation affects the course of the separation in the whole distillation column. For proper design of thermosyphon reboiler accurate thermodynamic and transport properties of the boiling fluids are needed.

g. The vapor entering the column might need a vapor distributor to eliminate potential maldistribution. If the liquid is completely separated from the vapor entering the column. structured or random packing. This arrangement is quite common in oil refining and many stripping operations. Kettle reboilers (figure 1d) are very common. 4 . The column might have plates. no actual reboiler exists. Olujic et al. kettle reboiler. This is especially true for structured packing. see also figure 1: Direct steam/vapor heating. thermosyphon reboiler (natural circulation) or forced circulation reboiler.102c Reboiler systems The energy requirement for distillation is provided using a reboiler. then kettle reboiler can be represented with an ideal equilibrium stage in column calculations. When direct steam/vapor heating is used. Again. The kettle reboilers can also be realized inside the column bottom sump using heating coils (figure 1e) or electrical heating elements etc. see e. the vapor distributor might have an effect on the separation efficiency of the column internals. Otherwise the separation performance of column would be degraded. [1]. The way in which this is implemented can be one of the following. but a bottom sump to provide liquid level for control purposes is needed.

can have 5 . depending on the baffle configuration of the column bottom sump. e) Internal reboiler. c) Forced circulation reboiler. The thermosyphon reboiler.102c Figure 1. a) Vertical thermosyphon reboiler. Thermosyphon reboilers have gained more popularity in recent years due to the fact that the design of the two-phase vapor/liquid flow from the reboiler to the column can now be calculated more accurately than previously (with better models of twophase flow and better prediction of thermo-physical properties). Kister [2]. b) Horizontal thermosyphon reboiler. d) Kettle reboiler.

This can be accomplished by using an additional reboiler. the cases of direct steam heating and kettle reboilers do not need any special treatment for the reboiler efficiency calculation.102c an efficiency that is higher or lower than that of an ideal equilibrium stage. The efficiency of forced circulation reboiler is similar to that of a thermosyphon reboiler as necessary baffles and auxiliary baffles in column bottom sump can be installed. 6 . This might also be the case for an energy integration revamp. the entrained liquid drops in the vapor reduce the efficiency of the distillation column internals at least in the lowest packing section or lowest plate. A modification of thermosyphon reboilers that operate on basis of natural circulation (figure 1a and 1b) is to use forced circulation of the liquid to the reboilers (figure 1c). Efficiency of one-reboiler systems As was discussed in the previous chapter. Note that the two-phase flow must enter the column so that there is enough space for the separation of vapor and liquid. Forced circulation is used especially when the viscosity of the liquid is high. The only thing of importance for the separation efficiency calculation is the effect of the vapor distributor device. the design principle is such that potentially leaking equipment should be eliminated and thus the pump in the forced circulation reboiler is removed if possible and the reboiler system is designed as a thermosyphon reboiler. In this article we review also few of these multi-reboiler column systems. when distillation columns are revamped for higher throughput additional reboiler capacity is needed. Normally. Quite often. This also saves investment costs of the pump and its operating costs. Otherwise.

7 .102c Figure 2. Different implementations of thermosyphon reboiler.

This is achieved using a baffle in the distillation column bottom sump. Case 2b on the other hand has efficiency less than one. Sloley [7] has the opinion that the case of figure 2f is not useful as the role of the hole in baffle is questionable and the baffle loses its effect and therefore holes in the bottom sump baffles should not be installed. Once through thermosyphon reboiler (figure 2a) can be used for heat sensitive bottom product recovery. 8 . With high liquid circulation rate in the forced circulation reboiler it is difficult to keep the flow over the baffle as constant (Kister [2]).102c Several ways to use a thermosyphon reboiler are shown in figure 2. The amount of vaporized liquid can be better controlled using circulation (figure 2b). these can also be used for forced circulation reboilers. as normally is the case. Thermosyphon reboiler operates better when the liquid level on the column bottom sump is kept constant. In principle. In the case of figure 2b also some light components might evaporate from the bottom sump as the lighter and colder liquid from the lowest plate of the column enters the bottom sump liquid. no baffles are used and the efficiency of the reboiler is quite close to an ideal equilibrium stage. If the liquid circulation in a forced circulation reboiler is high. As cases c to f in figure 2 show there are many ways to utilize the baffle and even an auxiliary baffle can be used. The efficiency of forced circulation reboilers behaves like that of natural circulation thermosyphon reboilers provided that the liquid circulation in them is small. Case 2a correspond to one ideal equilibrium stage. These structures of the reboiler are not equivalent to an ideal equilibrium stage. In packed columns this compartmental structure of the sump requires additional liquid collectors.

These high ratios are common with forced circulation reboilers. Two cases were selected. Trbout is the temperature of the outlet flow from the reboiler. In table 1 the thermal conditions in the reboiler system are given when recycle flow rate is changed.2 ) and one with high relative volatility (ethane/hexane a » 6 . which is the same as that of the recycle flow entering the reboiler.4 0. It is seen that high relative volatility and low recycling ratios both enhances the non-ideality of the reboiler system. TB gives the temperature of bottom flow.2 0 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 R/B ratio of recycle flow to bottoms product Figure 3. The liquid entering the reboiler has ethane concentration 10 mol-% in both cases.e.8 0.12 ). RF/B gives the ratio of the recycle liquid flow to the reboiler over the the bottom product flow rate. a » 2. It is seen that 9 . Very high recycle to bottom flow ratios are required to have ideal separation in the reboiler. one with low relative volatility (ethane/propane. VFF is the vaporization ratio of the reboiler i.102c The reboiler type in figure 2b was simulated to illustrate the effect of the recycling flow rate to the separation efficiency and the temperatures of the reboiler. Efficiency 1 0. The results are shown in the figure 3 below. Effect of recycle flow rate to separation efficiency of reboiler without baffle (type b in figure 2). the ratio of vapor generated in the reboiler over the liquid feed to the reboiler.6 ethane/propa ne ethane/hexan e 0.

6 51.1 E 0.9 E 0. The effect of vaporization ratio to the temperature gradient in the reboiler is thus also very high from about 60 o C to 4 oC depending on the vaporization range.5 15 29.74 51.82 0. The reboilers can also be installed in series. RF/B 3 7.05 50.6 0.1 50.3 Trbout/oC 52. Effect of recycle flow rate to reboiler conditions.1 VFF 66% 25% 12% 6% 3% Efficiency of multi-reboiler systems As was previously mentioned it is possible to have multiple reboilers in one distillation column. Ethane/Hexane system. RF/B 3 7. Here the relative volatility difference in the reboiler system is very high. If two reboilers with the same temperature are used.9 TB/oC 125 155 166 172 175.8 60. Table 1. According to Martin and Sloley [8] these configurations are the most common ways to utilize two heating sources at different temperatures.7 0.8 29.5 58. Thus 10 .88 0.2 oC at VFF = 3 %.7 51.79 0.9 51. they should be identical and installed in parallel with identical piping and balancing line.97 TB/oC 48.3 oC at VFF = 67 % to 0.1 51. which ranges from 4.94 0.5 179.5 VFF 67% 26% 13% 7% 3% In table 2 the conditions are given for the Ethane/Hexane case. Effect of recycle flow rate to reboiler conditions.4 51.33 0. Ethane/Propane system.54 0.102c low recycling liquid ratio (high vaporization ratio) generates a temperature gradient in the reboiler. Table 2.5 Trbout/oC 184 182 180 179.4 14. Some arrangements with two reboilers are shown in figure 4.

. These two reboiler systems do not correspond to one ideal equilibrium stage. Figure 4. they can be more or less effective than that. The actual calculation of multi-reboiler system is even more complicated if additionally an auxiliary baffle is installed in the column bottom sump.102c these cases are useful in energy integration of processes as lower temperature streams can be used as heating medium. Some of the most commonly 11 used two reboiler systems.

However. On the design of a new column the opportunity to evaluate various reboiler alternatives gives one a good change for optimization. 12 . If the column has only few separation stages then the non-ideality of the reboiler should be taken into account in the solution of the whole column equipment. If the bottom fluid is pure or all compounds in the bottom fluid have very similar boiling points then the effect of non-ideal reboiler is only marginal.102c Effect of reboiler non-ideality Normally. The range of the temperature gradients depends on the vaporization fraction and the wideness of the boiling range of the compounds in the bottom. if the bottom product contains compounds with wide boiling points then large temperature gradient can be formed in the reboiler. in flowsheeting simulations the reboilers of distillation columns are taken as ideal equilibrium stages. Based on the above discussion this assumption is valid only for some reboiler systems. The other point worth considering is the boiling range and temperature of bottom fluid. The different reboiler configurations shown above indicate that much of the actual distillation hardware must be known for the simulation. On the other hand if the number of the required separation stages is moderate or high then a small error in reboiler efficiency is tolerable because it’s effect to column separations is small. This is the case for a revamp project where the column already exists and is investigated for more throughput or feed/product quality change etc.

Emv = yn y * n - yn .1 (1) The Murphree vapor phase plate efficiency is then used for each plate of the column and its value is different for each plate and component in multi-component system. which requirement the ideal equilibrium stage assumption does not fulfill. for two-phase flows in thermosyphon reboiler systems requires a lot of accurate thermodynamic and transport properties. piping etc. This is defined on the basis of figure 5 as equation 1 shows. but for multi-component systems this is not the case as the mass transfer rates of the 13 .102c The actual design of the heat exchanger.1 yn . Solution method to account for reboiler non-ideality The plate column efficiency is most often taken into account using Murphree vapor phase plate efficiencies. A real plate and an ideal plate. These are easily obtained when the reboiler system is modeled in physically meaningful way. This subject is discussed later in more detail. Figure 5. For a binary system the efficiency of both components in a given plate is the same.

The approach we are using in flowsheeting program FLOWBAT [3] is different. The use of Murphree vapor phase plate efficiencies is possible in most commercial flowsheeting packages. The reboiler efficiency for each component i is defined as (reboiler being numbered as plate 1): 14 . The method was further developed to account the efficiency of the whole plate by considering the flow models of the plate by Ilme [4] and also extended for packed columns. This procedure is well described in the book of Taylor and Krishna [12]. In actual column simulations the plate efficiencies are calculated during column iteration in an additional loop as is described in the figure 6 below. As we are able to calculate with flowsheeting program FLOWBAT real industrial distillation columns with plates/packings in great detail (see e. [6]. Another alternative to handle these non-ideal mass transfer effects is to use rate-based distillation models. but normally these models yield only the point efficiency of the plate and do not take into account the flow phenomena on the plate and thus they are not adequate for large industrial columns. This method and its implementation into a detailed column simulation program is described by Aittamaa [5]. see Keskinen et al.102c components deviate from each other. We use generalized Maxwell-Stefan multicomponent mass transfer model to yield the point efficiency of the plate. [11]) we also introduced a method for simultaneous solution of nonideal reboiler systems. Jakobsson et al. [10] or Ilme et al.g. By inspecting equation 1 we can see that this definition is not good for reboilers.

b) the flash and stream dividers are introduced in the distillation column matrix equations and c) the column is solved as such in a nested two loop system (Newton-Raphson) where the solution is corrected with the efficiencies and enthalpies.102c Constant x in yin Ln Vn Solve E in Constant E in Solve x in yin Ln V n Test Covergence Figure 6. An additional loop to recalculate plate efficiencies during the distillation column iterations. In addition to using this correction for each component we must also correct the temperatures (and enthalpies) of the vapor entering the plate above reboiler and the bottom product.. ER . The solution method for the reboiler system could have been at least one of the following: a) the column is solved without a reboiler and the reboiler is built as an external loop connected to the column and containing all necessary flashes and stream distributors etc.i = yi1 yi*1 (2) This efficiency is then used in a similar way as the Murphree vapor phase plate efficiency in distillation column calculations. 15 .

Also. This all lead to the most effective way to calculate the reboiler efficiencies using alternative (c). pressures and temperatures from the distillation program and solves the reboiler equation sets simultaneously with a given specification of the operation of the reboiler yielding the reboiler outlet stream flows. but the logic for forming these matrices would have been complicated and it would have been quite time consuming to add new reboiler configurations. Nowadays.102c We did not select the first alternative (a). Björk [9] gives 16 . which is not modified in any other ways. although all the tools are available in any decent flowsheeting program. Each of the reboiler systems obtains the flows. the reboiler system has to be modeled for each case again. The other alternative (b) would cause problems in the program structure. the matrix manipulation of off diagonal elements of the tridiagonal distillation column solution matrix is not a problem. These are then related to the reboiler stage of the column to obtain the reboiler efficiencies that in turn are returned for the distillation program. as it might be difficult to converge the external loop connected to the distillation model. A suitable initial value generation is required and a very simple one based just on the streams entering the reboiler is sufficient. temperatures and pressures. These reboiler models just provide the efficiencies of the reboiler and the thermal conditions of the flows in reboiler system for the distillation program. It is also relatively easy to add new reboiler systems. This method allows easy modularization of the computer program. as each of the reboiler configurations is a quite simple network of flashes and stream dividers. their compositions. as there are so many alternative reboiler systems.

Figure 7.2 Recirculation reboiler with baffle 7.7 Once through reboiler followed by recirculation reboiler with baffle and auxiliary baffle 17 .3 Recirculation reboiler with baffle and auxiliary baffle 7.5 Once through reboiler followed by unbaffled recirculation reboiler 7.4 Once through reboiler 7.1 Unbaffled recirculation reboiler 7.102c more details of the computer implementation of this computational reboiler efficiency method. The reboiler systems implemented as modules in flowsheeting program FLOWBAT [3] are the following shown in figure 7. Reboiler systems implemented in flowsheeting program FLOWBAT: 7.6 Once through reboiler followed by recirculation reboiler with baffle 7.

1) in figure 7 demonstrate this.3 and 7. Vaporization in the reboiler sump can take place in these systems only if liquid flows upward. Specifications for one-reboiler systems Reboiler system type Type number in figure 7 4 1 2 3 Efficiency calculation Vaporisation and properties curves No Yes Yes Yes Yes Possible specifications Vapour fraction Yes Yes Yes Reb. down flow between baffles No No Yes Yes Yes 3 No Yes Yes Yes No No 18 . In order to solve reboiler system one operational specification for the reboiler is needed. up flow between baffles Recirculation with auxiliary baffle. Table 3. The program calculates the direction of the flow from the specifications given. feed rate Yes Yes Yes Temperature rise Yes Yes Yes Reb.7 liquid between baffles can flow either up or down. possible specifications for reboiler systems with two reboilers are stated in table 4. In reboiler systems 7. Possible specifications for reboiler systems with one reboiler are stated in table 3. Correspondingly. outlet temperature Yes No Yes Kettle / internal Once through Recirculation without baffle Recirculation with baffle Recirculaton with auxiliary baffle.102c Note that the simulation of unbaffled and baffled (maximum stability) reboiler systems is identical: The two uppermost reboiler system diagrams (7.

d) Case 7. b) Case 7. c) Case 7. e) Case 7. partial condenser and a reboiler system that is one of the following in figure 7: a) Case 7. a thermosyphon without a baffle. where a once through thermosyphon is used in series with a circulating thermosyphon with baffle. Specifications for systems with two reboilers Reboiler type Type number in figure 5 6 7 Reboiler Vapour fraction Once through Recirculation Once through Recirculation Once through Recirculation 7 Once through Recirculation Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Possible specifications Reboiler feed rate No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes Temperature rise Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Reb.2.102c Table 4. The column has 10 plates. outlet temperature Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes No Once through and recirculation without baffle Once through and recirculation with baffle Once through and recirculation with auxiliary baffle.3. Example As an example a deethanizer column is studied. where a once through 19 . a thermosyphon with a baffle and an auxiliary baffle. It is not possible to specify temperature rise in reboiler with auxiliary baffle and down flow between baffles because the temperature at reboiler inlet is not solved for in the model of this reboiler. a thermosyphon with a baffle. This temperature is set by column overall energy balance.5.1. The feed of the column is given in table 5.7. Defining feed rate for once through reboiler is not possible because all liquid from plate 2 (first actual plate above reboiler) is fed to this reboiler and flow rate is set by column calculations. up flow between baffles Once through and recirculation with auxiliary baffle. down flow between baffles 7 It is not possible to specify outlet temperature for the recirculation reboiler with baffle or for the recirculating reboiler with an auxiliary baffle and down flow between baffles because in these cases the reboiler outlet temperature is the same as the temperature of the bottoms product.

213 1.3 3. The Murphree vapor phase plate efficiency for all components is set to value 0.75).002 The liquid feed to the column is about 20 000 kg/h. The total heat duty for all reboiler systems was practically the same being about 1900 kW.077 87. which is also the feed plate. Component Hydrogen Methane Carbon dioxide Nitrogen Ethene Ethane Propene Propane 1-Butene Isobutene cis-2-Butene trans-2-Butene n-Butane Isobutane Heavies Mole % 0.10 0.083 0.09 0.068 6. The column pressure is 2.102c thermosyphon is connected before a thermosyphon with a baffle and an auxiliary baffle. The partial condenser. 20 . For two reboiler systems the once through reboiler had heat duty about 800 kW the rest heat being supplied with the circulating reboiler.517 0.118 6.0E-5 0.57 0.1 MPa and the reflux ratio was the same for all cases (3. The vaporization fraction of the feed to each of the reboiler systems was set to the same value 25 %.014 0. is set to have efficiency of unity. Plate 11. is set to have efficiency of unity for all components.827 0.7 for plates 2 to 10.012 0. The efficiency of the reboilers in all five cases is determined during the column solution thus affecting the bottom and top product quality. from which a vapor product of 3 000 kg/h is taken out. Table 5. Composition of the deethanizer feed.

i. but this configuration might be difficult to realize.2 0. Amount of ethane and lighter components in the bottom produc (mol-%) 0. reboiler feed temperature and logarithmic mean temperature difference in the 21 . amount of ethane and lighter components in the bottom product.e. although they perform equally well. The bottom product quality expressed as the mole-% sum of ethane and lighter components of different reboiler systems in the deethanizer distillation column. on the bottom product purity. Figure 8 shows that the use of a baffle (case b) or the use of a baffle and an auxiliary baffle (case c) in one-reboiler systems gave better bottom product quality than the case without baffle (case a). Our simulations with systems having more drastic change in the liquid composition in the reboiler have revealed that there is notable differences e.25 0. The best bottom product quality is obtained with case e.1 0.15 0.05 0 a b c Reboiler system d e Figure 8. The stability of case c is better and can thus be recommended over case b. The once through reboiler configuration (case d) perform about the same as cases b and c.102c Figure 8 shows the results of the simulations in relation to the bottom product quality.g.

heat capacity in constant pressure. They are normally needed as a function of the heat transferred. thermal conductivity. Thermal design of reboilers It is important to generate correct thermodynamic and transport property values for the detailed reboiler design. temperature and pressure.e. vapor and liquid viscosity. For example thermosyphon reboilers might not work because the natural circulation does not take place as designed due to the fact that the predicted vaporization fraction is in error. must be obtained along the heat exchanger. It is a good design practice to check the heat exchanger and two-phase flow calculations in various operation points of the column. The proper calculation of the required thermodynamic and transport property values requires the knowledge of the real pressure in the heat exchange equipment. Properties like vapor and liquid density. Variations of the feed and 22 . i. This requires the value of the liquid height in the distillation column bottom sump and the elevation of the column with regards to the heat exchanger to obtain correct liquid hydrostatic head.102c reboiler between various reboiler systems shown in figure 7. This might have been caused by the use of ideal assumption of the reboiler resulting in erroneous boiling temperature. Vaporization fraction calculation as a function of heat transferred requires correct thermodynamic model and the one used for distillation column calculation is normally a first choice. enthalpy and its temperature derivative. The trends in these values are also into different directions when the vaporization fraction in the thermosyphon is varied. The liquid density also affects this value and should be taken in the correct composition.

When the diameter. The effect of non-ideal reboilers is more often encountered when the bottom product is a mixture of compounds with different boiling points. This paper gave an overview on the efficiency of different reboiler systems. The pressure loss of the vapor/liquid mixture feed distributor in the column must also be taken into consideration. In a very worse case this may even lead to malfunction of the thermosyphon reboiler. care must be taken so that unnecessary rounding of the pipe diameter etc. length and geometry of the two-phase return flow to the column are determined.102c product purity specifications must be taken into account. Also. Other reboiler systems deviate form the ideal plate assumption providing either less or more separation than the ideal plate. This reboiler non-ideality reflects in the performance of the whole distillation column. the fouling of the heat exchange equipment must be studied. Then range of boiling temperature is formed in the reboiler. It might have an effect on the efficiency of the plate/packing above the reboiler. We introduced a new method for accounting the reboiler efficiency in distillation 23 . up or down is not carried out. but it is significant only in columns that have only few separation stages. Summary The ideal equilibrium stage assumption for reboilers holds only for certain types of reboiler systems. If the pipe diameter is increased then the pressure loss of pipe changes and this in turn changes the flow phenomena of the pipe.

i i Murphree vapor phase plate efficiency Efficiency of component i in plate n Reboiler efficiency for component i. One big advantage of this method is that it allows one to obtain most accurate data that is needed for proper heat exchanger and two-phase vapor/liquid flow calculations. Symbols Emv Ein ER . For this purpose also the plate and/packing efficiency should be taken into account.102c calculation. equation 2 Number of component Plate number. Then the overall distillation column design is more close to reality. numbering starts from reboiler Liquid flow from plate n Ratio of the recycle liquid flow to the reboiler over the bottom product flow rate Temperature of the bottom flow Temperature of outlet flow from the reboiler Liquid concentration as mole fraction n Ln RF/B TB Trbout x 24 . Based on our experience it is recommended that the distillation column reboiler type and its specifications be taken into account in every simulation when final equipment design or rating is done. In addition to that the simulation would then require or produce more thermodynamic and transport property data than the coarse distillation concept screening with ideal stages. This means that the simulation of distillation needs more input data from the column internals and also reboiler type and specifications must be available. This is extremely important in the design of natural circulation thermosyphon reboilers for systems where compounds of bottom product have wide boiling range.

Ilme. Keskinen and Juhani Aittamaa (Eds...P. Lappeenranta University of Technology. 4.. Aittamaa. Neste Engineering Oy and Helsinki University of Technology. Estimating Plate Efficiencies in Simulation of Industrial Scale Distillation Columns. Keskinen. Efficient approximate method for packed column separation performance simulation.). Mohammed Ali. J. 5.. Kemia- Kemi 8 (5). J. Proceedings of the International Conference on Distillation & Absorption (on CD). Kister. Kinnunen. A. Doctoral Thesis. Kari I. 295-317. Laboratory for Chemical Engineering and Plant Design. Baden-Baden. 25 . New York 1990. Olujic. L.. Z..102c xn Vn VFF y * yn Average liquid concentration (mole fraction) of liquid leaving plate n Vapor flow from plate n Vaporization fraction in reboiler Vapor concentration as mole fraction Vapor concentration (mole fraction) leaving plate n and being in equilibrium with liquid concentration xn References 1. A. Germany. 1981... Jansens.Z. Effect of the initial gas maldistribution on the pressure drop of structured packings. Aittamaa. FLOWBAT. Distillation operation. Baden-Baden. 2002. McGraw-Hill. User’s Instruction Manual. K.. Nyström. A. 2. September 30 October 2. Proceedings of the International Conference on Distillation & Absorption (on CD).I. 1997.K. 2002. Germany. September 30 October 2.. H. 3. 6. Estimating Multicomponent Plate Efficiencies in Distillation. J.

Symp. K.. 9. Keskinen... K. Aittamaa. A. 3 (1997I 52-64. Ilme..R. Engrs. Björk. BadenBaden.. Chem. Properly design thermosyphon reboilers. J. Ilme. Jakobsson. Prog.. M.. Hydrocarbon Processing 6 (1995) 67-78. V. J.I.Sc.102c 7.. K. 1997. Distillation & Absorption. Inst. G. J.Thesis. Sloley. Proceedings of the International Conference on Distillation & Absorption (on CD). 11. 12. Markkanen. A.. 8. Germany.October 2. Series.. Effectively design and simulate thermosyphon reboiler systems. Keskinen. 1993 26 . Krishna R.. Helsinki University of Technology..W..I.R. Simulation of industrial multicomponent MTBE distillation column using an equilibrium stage model with efficiency calculation. Martin. Laboratory for Chemical Engineering and Plant Design. Taylor R. Sloley. September 30 . Eng. J. 2002. 2000 (in Finnish). Plate efficiencies of industrial scale dehexaniser. 10. Part 1.. Aittamaa. Distillation column heat exchangers. Chem.W. J.L. Wiley.. Multicomponent mass transfer.K.

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