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Seader & Henley, Separation Process Principles


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Separation Processes
•  Absorption – Solutes removed from a gas into a liquid
•  Solutes removed from liquid into gas is called stripping or desorption

•  Distillation – Thermal vapor-liquid separation processes (Ch 11); vapor


phase generated from liquid

•  Liquid-liquid extraction – Solute extracted from liquid A into an


immiscible liquid B (a solvent)

•  Leaching (extraction) – Solute extracted from a solid into a solvent phase


(liquid, dense gas, or supercritical fluid)

•  Membrane processing – Molecules separated using a dense (non


-porous film) or porous physical barrier
•  Filtration – Suspended solids separated from a liquid or gas phase using a
porous membrane

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Vapor-liquid equilibria...
(e.g. ideal, methanol-water system)
BP diagram at const P (ideal) x-y diagram at const P

Methanol more
dew-point
volatile than water

x=y
Pm > Pw
(1 component)
bubble-point
Pm > 1 atm

P (= pm + pw) diagram at const T

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Vapor-liquid equilibria...
(e.g. non-ideal, n-hexane-ethanol system)

Low T

Ethanol more
volatile
γePe > γhPh

x=y Ethanol less


at 58oC volatile
γePe < γhPh
High T

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Getting into separations
x-y diagram at const P

The greater the


separation
x=y between the
equilibrium and 45o
line, the easier the
separation

yA / xA yA / xA α AB x A
α AB = = yA =
yB / xB (1− y A ) /(1− x A ) 1+ (α AB −1)x A
PA if α AB = 1, y A = x A
α AB =
PB
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Simple flash distillation
(single stage; heated to T, phase split)
x-y diagram at const P

The greater the


separation
F =V + L x=y between the
equilibrium and 45o
FxF = Vy + Lx line, the easier the
∴ FxF = Vy + (F − V )x separation


V, y

F, xF separator
heater

L, x 6
Binary distillation of components A & B
(A is more volatile, e.g. methanol (A)-water (B) system)

Near yA = 1 @ TB,A
(light boiler)

Where “cold” reflux


liquid condenses
some or the vapor
Enriching section

Liquid Vapor
depleted of enriched
A in A

Where liquid is
stripped of A by
raising vapor from
reboiler Near xB = 1 @ TB,B
Stripping section (high boiler)
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F = D + W (molar flow)
Fx F = Dx D + WxW
D x F − xW W xD − xF
= , =
F x D − xW F x D − xW


Vn +1 = Ln + D
Vn +1y n +1 = Ln x n + Dx D

Ln D
y n +1 = xn − xD
€ Vn +1 Vn +1

€ Vm +1 = Lm − W
Vm +1 y m +1 = Lm x m - WxW

Lm W
y m +1 = xm − xW
€ Vm +1 Vm +1
W
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xW
Approximation - Constant molal overflow

•  Liquid and vapor flowrates are nearly constant in rectifying


(top) and stripping (bottom + feed plate) sections
–  Ln=Ln+1=Ln+2… Vn=Vn+1=Vn+2…
–  L and V, rectifying; L and V, stripping

•  ΔHv (condensing high boiler) ≈ ΔHv (vaporizing low boiler)

•  Operating equations or lines are linear


Ln D Lm W
y n +1 = xn − xD y m +1 = xm − xW
Vn +1 Vn +1 Vm +1 Vm +1

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€ €
Variables

•  # Plates, plate design, height of


column, etc. (later)
•  Cooling in condenser
–  Liquid returned to top of column
(reflux)
•  Heating in reboiler
–  Vapor returned to bottom of column
•  Location and conditions of feed
–  Cold? Hot? L or V or L-V?

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Ln Vn +1 − D
R= = (overhead product, L at B.P.)
D D

R 1

y n +1 = xn − xD
R +1 R +1

Top plate (1) Total Partial


condenser condenser

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Heating and cooling requirements

•  Reboiler with saturated steam

λ = latent heat steam


V λ
ms = m +1 λs = latent heat vapor mixture
λs
Vm +1 = vapor flowrate from reboiler (stripping section)


•  Condenser with cooling water

c p,w = heat capacity cooling water
Vn +1 λ
mw = (T2 − T1 ) = Temp change in cooling water
(T2 − T1 )c p,w
Vn +1 = vapor flowrate into condensor
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Feed conditions
moles L in stripping section from feed
q>1 q=1 0<q<1 q=
(sub-cooled L) (@ BP) (L-V) moles feed
HV (D.P.) − H F
q=
HV (D.P.) − H L (B.P.)

(HV − H L ) + c p,L (TB − TF )


q=
HV − H L


Lm = Ln + qF (stripping)
Vn = Vm + (1− q)F (rectifying)

q 1
q=0 q<0 y= x− xF
1− q 1− q 13
(@ D.P.) (superheated V)
McCabe-Thiele Method - # of ideal plates
McCabe & Thiele, Industrial Engineering & Chemistry Research, 17 (1925) 605.

V=L, R→∞ (total reflux)


y=x (P=Pi at each tray)

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Rectifying section
xD ≡ design condition
R ≡ design variable

R 1
y n +1 = xn − xD
R +1 R +1

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Stripping section

Lm W
y m +1 = xm − xW
Vm +1 Vm +1


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Feed conditions (feed line)
R 1
y n +1 = xn − xD
R +1 R +1
@ B.P.
q 1
y= x− xF
1− q 1− q €

@ D.P.

Lm W
y m +1 = xm − xW 17
Vm +1 Vm +1
Putting it all together…

Ln D
y n +1 = xn − xD
Vn +1 Vn +1

q 1
y= x− xF
1− q 1− q

Lm W
y m +1 = xm − xW
Vm +1 Vm +1

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Stepping off stages (start at xD)
operating equilibrium

x = xF

x = xW
4 stages + reboiler

What we want in
bottoms product What we want
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in
(start here) overhead product
Minimum # of plates

Fenske equation :

 x D (1− xW ) 
ln 
 (1− x D ) x W 
Nm =
ln α av OR
*includes rebioler
V=L (op lines = 45o)

R→∞ (total reflux)



1/ 2
xB xD
α av = (α Aα B )


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Minimum reflux
(occurs @ pinch point, P)

Rm xD − y'
=
Rm + 1 x D − x '

y ' , x ' @ pinch point

R€ 1
y n +1 = xn − xD
R +1 R +1

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